Over 3,400 children, who have a parent serving in the UK Armed Forces, joined one of 20 school workshops run by Little Troopers in the lead up to National Armed Forces Day. The online interactive workshops were delivered over two weeks with 200 schools signing up and taking part.
The workshops, which were funded by the Armed Forces Covenant Fund, celebrated what it means to be a ‘Little Trooper’ and showcased some of the key schools resources that the charity has developed. Over two hours there was storytelling, imaginative play, movement and drama. The children were also shown tools that could help them navigate some of the challenges they might face either now or in the future. The workshop was facilitated by two entertainers and there were smiles and laughter throughout.
Louise, founder of the charity said “About three years ago I had the idea of a schools roadshow to bring our work into schools and reach military children. Now the first 20 workshops have been delivered, I am so Proud! Even though Covid meant we had to take the roadshow online, we’ve had some amazing feedback from teachers, parents and most importantly all the special little troopers. They have loved coming together to share their experiences and be proud to be part of the British Armed Forces community”
One teacher told us “Today’s roadshow not only celebrated the real positives of military life but also provided much-needed recognition and support for our forces children. The session provided a safe space to share and support each other emotionally, whilst eliciting a sense of pride and community spirit. Thank you, Little Troopers!”
Lauryn, one of the children taking part, added: “I am so glad I had the chance to listen to other people’s unique stories of being a military child, it made me realise I’m not alone.”
Through ten workshops a week, for two weeks, Little Troopers managed to cover all the regions of England. The charity will be working with the Welsh Local Government Association to deliver a roadshow across Wales, as part of its Supporting Service Children in Education (SSCE) Cymru programme, in the Autumn.
The Little Troopers at schools programme has been developed over the last four years. Its aim is to make it really easy for schools to have targeted resources they can use with their military children – whether that’s one or two military children or 200.
Louise adds. “We want to make sure that wherever children live and however many schools they go to, they can access support if they need it and that all schools have a good understanding of the unique challenges that military life can bring.”
The charity now has a wealth of resources for primary schools, secondary schools and advice for parents with children moving schools. Click here to find out more.