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Following the success of the Poppy Calls pilot scheme the service is about to be rolled out nationally by The Royal British Legion.
Designed to help members of the ex-Forces community to remain more independent in their own homes, Poppy Calls offers help with those awkward jobs around the house, such as minor repairs, or fitting essential devices such as smoke detectors and community care alarms. A Legion 'Handyman' or 'Fitter' has been on call in several areas across the country to provide necessary assistance and practical advice, with the use of a Legion-branded and well equipped van.
Research carried out by the Legion identified that nearly 400,000 veterans aged 75 and over, experience difficulty maintaining their homes.
A conference was held on 14 September 2009 at Wyboston Lakes, Bedfordshire along with key partners in the collaborative scheme. It was attended by representatives from a number of charities, including The Royal British Legion and other Forces and care for the elderly charities. Key speakers included Chris Simpkins, Director General of The Royal British Legion and Steve Malone, Director of Foundations, which is the national co-ordinating body for Home Improvement Agencies. The Legion's National Vice-Chairman John Farmer was also in attendance.
The Legion's Director General, Chris Simpkins who addressed the conference, said: "4.4 million elderly people in the UK are eligible for the Legion’s support, meaning they are ex-Service. Many of these people possibly find it difficult to maintain the lifestyle they once did in their own homes and Poppy Calls enables those people to feel safe and secure. A service like Poppy Calls is great value to our beneficiaries, especially during economically testing times. It will go from strength to strength as it continues to be rolled out in other areas."
Further information on the service can be obtained by calling its centralised call centre on 01480 478 031.
©The Royal British Legion 2013. Registered Charity No 219279. 199 Borough High St, London SE1 1AA. Tel +44 (0)20 3207 2100