RNBT offers £3m lifeline for help with cost of living crisis

ALMOST £3 million pounds is being made available to Navy families including those across Gosport and Fareham boroughs struggling with the cost of living crisis, the BBC has reported this week.

The Royal Naval Benevolent Trust (RNBT) said a potential 500,000 personnel, veterans and dependants could be eligible for its support.

The Portsmouth-based charity, in its centenary year, has given the equivalent of over £200 million in funding since it was first launched.

Chief executive Rob Bosshardt said the charity made a “crucial difference”.

Established in 1922, the trust provides financial support to cover costs including living expenses, house repairs and disability aids and cares for people in its own care home.

As part of RNBT’s research into how to support struggling families in its centenary year, it found more than a third (42%) of people admitted to being worried about going into debt, with two-thirds (69%) admitting to feeling stressed or angry with the current cost-of-living crisis.

In the past year, the trust has pledged more than £161,000 in grants to support both former and serving navy personnel to pay essential household bills and rent, with “a more recent surge” in the wake of the increasing cost of living.

Rob Bosshardt, CEO of the RNBT, said: “I urge anyone from the naval family who needs help to get in touch with RNBT. The first call is always difficult, but you will be talking to someone who is keen to help.

“We want to make a crucial difference at this difficult time for naval people and their families.”

Among the veterans helped by the trust is Janet Riddell who lost her who right leg while serving in Iraq.

She said the trust had been a “godsend” after it funded a specialist wheelchair for her.

“Without their help I would have been housebound and God knows what my mental health state would have been,” she said. They came up trumps – I know what they’ve done for me and how much they can do for people.”

For the full report, readers are encouraged to visit the BBC News website.

PICTURED BY RNBT: Charity from Portsmouth has helped Gosport and Fareham Navy Families for 100 yrs.

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