The Ripple Pond – a Self Help Support Group for Families of Injured Servicemen and Women,

Here’s a personal message from Julia Maloney the founder of the Ripple Pond

If you are a family member of an injured serviceman or woman and would like to join a group of other mums, dads, brothers, sisters, wives, husbands, then please do contact me.  I have set up a self-help support group in the South East which meets every other month, or more frequently if members want to, with the sole aim of providing a space to express feelings safely, in a non-judgemental environment, where everyone is heard.

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Getting life back

My son, a serving soldier, was injured in combat in 2009, and initially my primary aim was to support him and his family.  As the year progressed there were multiple visits between home, hospital and Headley Court and there seemed little time to process any feelings.   I felt isolated from the regimental welfare system and would have welcomed someone in a similar position reaching out and inviting me to join them for a cup of coffee and a chat.

I used my self-awareness to good end and, about 15 months after my son’s injury, I contacted Help for Heroes. I asked them for help to set up a national support network for the wives, husbands, mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters of wounded servicemen and women.

Immediately they put into action the development of Band of Sisters, with one of its aims to be the hope that those who subscribed to be members of Band of Sisters would be willing to share their contact details so that at least an ‘internet’ network could be established.

I am sure there are many people round the country like me, who are not on a ‘patch’ nor part of a regiment’s welfare system, and who feel alone with the trauma of seeing their loved one come back injured.  It does not matter ‘what’ the injury is – the fact that your loved one has been injured is a shock.  Knowing your injured serviceman/woman is home and alive does not mean you don’t feel angry, scared or downright sad.  Your world has been changed by an event beyond your control and the need to have someone reach out and listen to your story, however many times you need to tell it, to have someone bear witness to your distress can be liberating.

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The journey may be long and steep – and you are not alone

The Ripple Pond is a self-help support group, initially set up in Brighton for family members – mums, dads, brothers, sisters, husbands and wives – of injured servicemen and women. The group meets every other month, with the sole aim of providing a space to express feelings safely, in a non-judgemental environment, where everyone is heard.  Group members arrange meeting times and places – it is a group to meet the needs of the members of that group.  It is my hope that the group here in Sussex will be a model for other groups to start up around the country – a ripple effect – so that family members will not have to travel too far to find somewhere they can meet and share their experiences, and they can set their own dates and times for those meetings.

 If you are a family member of an injured serviceman or woman and would like to be part of this group we would welcome you.  Please contact me for more information.

If you know anyone who you think may benefit from support from our self-help group, I would be really grateful if you would pass on my contact details.   Best wishes Julia

Contact Details:

Julia Molony
07968 310329


www.juliamolony.co.uk/theripplepond

 

 

 

 

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