ARU role in examining wellbeing of ex-Service families

Published: 11 May 2020 at 15:44

Soldiers marching

Anglia Ruskin University joins UK-wide partnership commissioned by FiMT

Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) is part of a UK-wide research partnership that will conduct a study examining the unique factors that affect psychological health and wellbeing among ex-Service families.

Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) has awarded £306,956 to Queen’s University Belfast (QUB) to co-ordinate the project, which will identify the psychological health and wellbeing needs of families of ex-Service personnel across each of the four UK nations. 

Through a survey, in-depth interviews and focus groups with families, the research will examine the drivers that support psychological wellbeing as well as the challenges that come with having a member of the family in the Armed Forces. The research will also identify the likely future needs of ex-Service families.

The two-year long project was commissioned and awarded under FiMT’s Health Programme. As a result of COVID-19, the start date has been delayed until September 2020.


Matt Fossey, Director of the Veterans and Families Institute for Military Social Research at ARU, said:

“Families play a key role in helping Armed Forces personnel feel supported, and can be extremely influential in their decisions. 


“Understanding the psychological wellbeing of these families is therefore vital, and we are very pleased to be part of this partnership examining this important subject.” 


Ray Lock, Chief Executive of FiMT, said:

“The importance of families is widely recognised in the Armed Forces and the extent to which a family is able to support a Service leaver during their time in service, and their subsequent exit, is a strong indicator of a successful transition. 

“While most Service leavers and their families make a successful transition from the Armed Forces to civilian life, there is a minority who struggle, and the impact of service on the psychological health and wellbeing of families is an under-researched area. 

“This study will provide us with an important evidence base on the needs of families and offer much-needed recommendations on how best to support them.”