R3 Cymru - standing for Resettle, Recover and Reskill - offers a range of support services to ex-service personnel suffering from the effects of combat-related stress. The charity, with its main offices in Monmouthshire, has just launched three new specialist centres, including a pioneering eco-therapy centre near Abergavenny. The new partnership will see NatWest providing financial education and money management advice, enabling candidates to manage their finances effectively as they adjust to civilian life.
Under the leadership of well-known Monmouthshire figure Andrew Hubert von Staufer, the charity has just accepted its first tranche of candidates in north Wales, with more to follow in Monmouthshire and the Valleys. The charity will also provide specialist support from its centre in Triley, once that is complete.
As well as money management advice, R3 also provides career development, vocational training, business and enterprise and family engagement courses. Counselling and meditation will also be used to ease combat stress. In the longer term, the charity hopes to expand its services further through a projected £1.4million facility at Arcadia Wood as well as developing a network of therapy and training centres across Wales. R3 aims to treat 200 candidates by the end of this year.
R3 Managing Director Andrew Hubert von Staufer, whose own father served in the Second World War, said: "I am thrilled that after so much planning and hard work we are able to welcome our first candidates. I am very pleased to also announce our new partnership with NatWest, who will deliver a financial education programme for us. Learning how to manage their finances is a crucial part of adjusting to civilian life and NatWest will be making a very valuable contribution to the overall support R3 can provide. Our driving force is to help those who have served for their country to achieve a stable, sustainable family life on their return, and to avoid the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder being passed down to the next generation."
NatWest Local Chief Executive Officer for South Wales Borders Rhian Head said: "It is so important that ex-servicemen and women are supported as they make the transition to civilian life. I’m delighted that we are able to support Andrew and his team with their ambitious plans for R3 and we’re very much looking forward to getting involved. As well as providing money management lessons, we also intend to roll up our sleeves at the centre as part of NatWest’s ongoing community investment programme, where we volunteer in the local communities where we work."
The charity is setting up its main office base at Wentwood Forest. Initial funding for each candidate is being provided by the British Army. Ex-service personnel can also self refer to the centre.