East Sussex Veteran’s Hub – Bernard Stonestreet

Wed, Apr 6th 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

The Club’s speaker on 6th April 2022 was Bernard Stonestreet, an officer in the
Royal Marines, who also served in the Army. He spoke about an organisation he had
founded in 2016, the East Sussex Veteran’s Hub (ESVH).

 Since that date, the Hub has gained charity status and has been supported through contracts with East Sussex County Council to provide services to address alcohol and drug addition, all which ESVH had previously developed for veterans.

ESVH provides support to all military veterans (and families) who have any form of difficulty within their lives; this can include those with PTSD and mental Ill health, those involved in the criminal justice system, homelessness, various addictions and domestic and family problems.

The Hub holds a weekly drop in centre where the veterans can talk about their difficulties, receive advice and counselling. It has developed an holistic approach and is a single point of contact where the veterans can gradually be helped back into community.

The specific aims are to improve the veterans’:

•Quality of life and well-being

•Ability to self-help and problem solve

•Vision and preparation of/for the future

•Self-esteem, ambition and potential for re-integration into the community

•Recovery thereby reducing impact and costs on community, social services and NHS,


As well as:-

•Increase desistence and reduce reoffending potential of veterans involved with criminal justice system

•To provide non-clinical support, including welfare, well-being and coping for veterans of the armed forces in East Sussex, particularly those with combat related PTSD and mental health issues.

•Increase veterans’ ability to understand, address and manage PTSD, mental health symptoms and through self-help gain a reasonable quality of life.


To understand a veteran’s problems, some of which don’t develop for a number of years, the Hub uses a special assessment called TRIM, specially adapted for veterans. Their main needs are identified, and programmes developed to help address their issues. With access to the right resources, people can become empowered by their own abilities and gain the confidence to fulfil their potential.

The hub works as an established single point of contact for East Sussex based in Hastings town centre, providing a regular ‘drop-in’ service with access to a community café and facilitating a wellbeing and coping group which meets fortnightly. The forum enables the Hub to arrange and manage events for benefit of service users, by establishing collaboration and working relationships with other charities and organisations. This ensures the needs of those who use the Hub are managed through mentoring and referral pathways. In addition, ESVH aim to raise awareness of the needs and issues of this particular cohort and to secure funds to ensure sustainability of the organisation.

Because of the Hub’s established and successful programme, they were awarded a major contract from East Sussex County Council to run the “ADDER” project, helping those in the broader community addicted to drugs and alcohol to rehabilitate.

Part of ESVH programme includes a rural activity facility where participants can learn new skills such as fence making, country and woodcraft, sculpture and wood carving. With the Hub’s central location in Hastings, it provides easy access for those involved, direct support for other services and organisations coupled with a range of services at low or no cost plus a facility for new initiatives and activities.

You can download the latest ESVH newsletter by clicking here: Download pdf newsletter

More information may be found on ESVH’s website: https://www.eastsussexveteranshub.co.uk/

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