Veterans’ charity Launchpad has been awarded the silver award from the Ministry of Defence (MoD) Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) for demonstrating its commitment and support to Defence and the wider Armed Forces community.
Launchpad is one of 56 businesses that has secured the silver award. The scheme encompasses bronze, silver, and gold awards for employer organisations that pledge, demonstrate or advocate support to Defence and the armed forces community, and align their values with the Armed Forces Covenant.
Launchpad was awarded the bronze award in February 2021 and has continued to demonstrate its commitment to the military community. The charity provides accommodation and support, with the help of specialist providers, to support homeless veterans who have fallen on hard times and have found the transition from military to civilian life difficult.
To strive for Silver recognition, Launchpad has:
- Employed 14 Defence people including reservists and veterans.
- Enabled reservists to apply for up to 15 days special leave of absence to attend training and courses with the reserve forces.
- Continued to support resident veterans living in all three houses in Liverpool, Newcastle and Durham with housing, health and wellbeing and employment opportunities as part of their transition to move on and live independently.
- Engaged with other military charities, the Armed Forces and an extensive network of corporate partners to promote and support veterans and reservists.
Nicola Higham, Deputy Manager at Launchpad’s Speke House in Liverpool said;
“Through my five years’ service at the Army Reserves, I have been fully supported by Launchpad and can adjust my working hours if necessary. Each year, I’m granted 15 days paid leave entitlement for my annual camp. Without the support of Launchpad, I would not be able to offer my service in the capacity that I do.”
David Shaw, CEO and Founder of Launchpad, commented:
“This is fantastic news and we are delighted to receive this silver award in recognition for our commitment and support to the Armed Forces and the veterans we have supported since we were founded in 2013. Veterans and reservists are a fundamental part of our expanding workforce and I’m proud this has been recognised.”
Commenting on the announcement of the 2023 Employer Recognition Scheme Silver awards; Assistant Chief of Defence Staff (Reserve & Cadets), Major General Marc Overton said: “I would like to thank and congratulate the recipients of this year’s Employer Recognition Scheme Silver Awards. A Silver award recognises the fantastic efforts of employers throughout the UK who have both elevated their commitments under the Armed Forces Covenant and provided actual benefits to the Armed Forces Community.
“The winners should all be proud of their life-changing impact and fresh opportunities they are providing to our Reservists, veterans and their families. The number of winners this year yet again shows that the Armed Forces family talent pool is also providing tangible business benefit.”
Colonel Mark Underhill OBE DL, Chief Executive at the North West of England and the Isle of Man Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association (NW RFCA) and a Trustee of Launchpad, said:
“On behalf of the Ministry of Defence, we are honoured and delighted to be able to recognise the outstanding support and commitment given to the Armed Forces Covenant by businesses and organisations in the region, through the Employer Recognition Scheme awards. Each recipient has demonstrated their support to the Covenant and the wider Armed Forces community, but also that they are prepared to support their Reservists, Service Leavers, Spouses, Veterans, Cadet Force Adult Volunteers and Cadets in the workplace.”
Launchpad runs three houses in the North of England providing accommodation and support for up to 100 veterans. Since 2013, over 620 veterans have been supported across all three houses in Liverpool, Newcastle and Durham.
The full list of businesses achieving the Silver Award can be viewed here.