The RAF Families Federation has launched a new ‘family-friendly’ resource for RAF families living overseas, and those considering an overseas assignment.
The development of the new overseas section of their website was commissioned by the RAF to improve its links with its people and their families who are living away from its main stations. The approach follows a recommendation from the Royal Air Forces Association (RAFA) Research Council to develop an easily accessible repository for people serving overseas and reflects the themes identified by the RAF Families Federation research, ‘The RAF Family – experiences from around the world’.
The new overseas resource will help to increase preparedness, ensuring there are no nasty surprises, for Service personnel and their families on overseas assignments.
The new content is broken down into the phases of an overseas assignment, making it easy for the user to identify the information that is appropriate for their circumstances:
• Before applying
• Once their Assignment Order is received
• Whilst on their overseas tour
• Returning from overseas
It includes a selection of useful resources; ‘help pages’ addressing key concerns, downloadable checklists to aid the planning process, as well as locational information.
The project was conducted with the RAF as a key stakeholder together with a range of other MOD stakeholders. The end product is a single community information portal where RAF personnel and their families can go for guidance throughout their overseas journey.
To ensure the content reflects the needs of Service personnel and their families serving overseas, the RAF Families Federation recruited volunteers on, and recently returned from, assignments in various locations around the world. By incorporating a variety of experiences and viewpoints, the overseas resource created is very comprehensive.
Jade Coe, the overseas project lead at the RAF Families Federation, comments:
“The new overseas section of the website has been 12 months in the making and it’s great to see it come into fruition. I’d like to thank the families that shared their experiences with me, your input has been invaluable and has really shaped the end product. I hope the overseas hub will become a ‘go-to’ resource for those considering an overseas assignment, helping to reduce the number of unwanted surprises and their impact.”
Air Commodore Alan Opie, Assistant Chief of Staff Personnel Delivery Air Command, commented:
“I am delighted to see the launch of this valuable new resource by the RAF Families Federation, which will allow RAF personnel and their families who are serving on an overseas tour or preparing for one to gain full and easy access to the information that they need. This excellent website has been carefully designed to signpost families to the support they require and helps them to remain connected to the RAF wherever they serve in the world.”
Warrant Officer Julian Spalding, Personnel Support Group MOD Saudi Arabia Project Team, commented:
“The RAF FF package is family friendly and aims to capture the requirements of the whole family and not just the Service Person. The use of hyperlinks is interactive and informative, and puts everything together concisely to assist families in making the right decisions for them.”