Salute our Forces

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In support of Armed Forces Week (22 to 28 June 2020), Sodexo has announced its support of SSAFA’s leading mentoring programme, aimed at helping service personnel leaving the Armed Forces transition into civilian life.

As an early signatory of the Armed Forces Covenant, Sodexo is committed to supporting the employment of ex-armed forces personnel and their families, as well as employees who are members of the Reserves. This commitment extended to our Public Service Pledge, which includes an annual target to employ 200 ex-service personnel and their families.

SSAFA’s mentoring programme was launched as a trial in 2018 at Catterick Garrison to support the transition of individuals returning who were, in some way, wounded, injured or sick (WIS) and, because of this, had been discharged from military service.

This year, the programme was expanded to include other service leavers and rolled-out nationwide, which is when Government & Agencies’ HR Director, Rachel Evans and HR Business Partner, Marc Vincent joined the scheme as an opportunity for personal growth and to give something back.

In a feature on the Sodexo website, Rachel talks about why the mentoring scheme means so much to her and why she decided to join the programme. She comments: “Taking part in the mentoring training has been a life-changing experience, both on a personal and professional level. The training is fantastic - you meet other mentors, mentees and hear from the communities touched by this service, giving you an opportunity to look at the world with a different lens.”

Both Rachel and Marc have already engaged with their respective mentees from the programme and have continued to work with them throughout the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

As part of the scheme, Rachel and Marc will be able to give something back to service leavers in a practical and tangible way. Rachel adds: “It’s about providing guidance and empowering people to make their own decisions, find their own solutions, and give them the confidence to make a difference by themselves, and part of the training will make you understand if it’s right for you.”

Rachel and Marc are truly stepping-up to support colleagues who, as Hidden Heroes themselves, have kept or continue to keep all of us safe.

Throughout Armed Forces Week, activities with SSAFA and beyond will be taking place across the region, including celebrations on Reserves Day (24 June) and Armed Forces Day (27 June).


To give everyone the opportunity to recognise the hard work and dedication of the Armed Forces, you can get involved with the #SaluteOurForces campaign. Through a simple gesture, you can pay tribute to the Armed Forces community by sharing a photo or video of yourself or your friends and colleagues saluting. See how you can take part here.

In addition to saluting our Hidden Heroes, we will also be recognising them here, on Your_Sodexo, in a series of themed features that share the stories of Sodexo colleagues making a difference.


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