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Most people who leave the Armed Forces transition effectively back into civilian life, but not all. Stoll – the leading provider of supported housing for Veterans – helps the most vulnerable by providing them with an affordable home to rent and the support they need to lead independent lives. Here, former Lance Corporal Kofi Brempong tells us exactly what Stoll did for him …
Kofi Brempong served as a Lance Corporal in the Royal Regiment Fusiliers for 12 years and was medically discharged in September 2015. He thoroughly enjoyed his time in the Armed Forces: ‘A lot of good things came from my experience of Army life, but when I left the Army I thought, “What next?”’
Stoll supports vulnerable Service leavers by providing them with an affordable home to rent and the support they need to lead independent lives.
During his transition period, Kofi was referred to Stoll. The charity was able to assist him and his family with finding a home. Kofi, his wife and three children are currently living in a Stoll Veterans Nomination Scheme property in London.
Kofi began working with Jenny, an employment advisor, who helped him put together an updated CV, suggested various employment opportunities and recommended that he take a two-month course with the NHS. Says Kofi, ‘I didn’t know anything about getting a job, but Jenny helped to direct my actions. No one can do it for you, but Jenny helped set me on the right path and in the right direction.’
Kofi has been working full-time for the NHS since June 2016. He has also studied at South Thames College and gained his Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence.
The charity, Walking With The Wounded, provides Stoll with an employment advisor to support Veterans to get a job or training.
In his procurement role, Kofi looks after 12 wards at Lewisham Hospital, ensuring his team is ordering everything they need from stationery to syringes. His main role is checking that all the stock is in order and being the main point of contact for the matron and ward sisters. Kofi actually had a very similar role in the Army, where he was a Weapons Armourer, responsible for ensuring each regiment had all the correct weapons for missions and training exercises.
Kofi says of his experience, ‘I’m so happy – more than happy. I am so thankful that I met the right people to give me the right information. My advice to other Service leavers would be to aim high – if you put your mind to the task, you can deal with it. I never thought I would be able to go into an NHS role – I just assumed I would go into security – but the skills I learned in the Army fitted perfectly for this job, which I love.’
Stoll CEO, Ed Tytherleigh, adds: ‘Kofi’s story highlights the importance of our personalised approach. Most people manage the transition from the Armed Forces to civilian life successfully, but not everyone does. Stoll is here to support vulnerable Service leavers – the people who need our help the most. Arranging accommodation for people is vital so that people like Kofi and his family have a place they can call home. It is great to see that Kofi has now also found work. This means he can live independently and support his family.’
Stoll’s drop-in runs every second Wednesday of the month at its Fulham site (see above), in the Community Hall
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