A strong voice for NI Veterans

Reassurance for Veterans after NI Veterans Support Office announces closure on 30th September

Press Eye - Northern Ireland - 26 March 2022

NI Veterans Commissioner's Office Roadshow - Bushtown Hotel - Coleraine.

20 March 2024

News of the closure, later this year, of the Northern Ireland Veterans Support Office (NIVSO) may have come as a shock to some within the veterans’ community. I wish to make it clear that the commitment to supporting NI veterans remains unwavering. 

The NIVSO has played a pivotal role across a range of coordinating services for veterans, including advising on funding opportunities, facilitating grants, and establishing committees to address crucial issues such as mental health and housing for veterans. Moreover, the office has connected veterans through various communication channels, including quarterly newsletters, social media platforms, and engagement with charitable organisations. Their legacy of advocacy and support will endure, ensuring that the impact of their remarkable work is felt for years to come.

I extend my heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the Head of Office, Liz Brown, her Deputy, Fiona, and Communications Officer Jeanette, for their exceptional dedication and service. Their tireless efforts have made a profound difference in the lives of veterans, and they will be sorely missed.

The Veterans Welfare Service Northern Ireland (VWS NI) will continue to provide essential welfare support for veterans of all cap badges and all services. Veterans can still access much-needed welfare support and advice through VWS NI, via phone, 028 90420145, email at dbsafvs-vws-ni@mod.gov.uk or at one of their four locations across NI – see further details below. In addition the Defence Medical Welfare Service is available to provide support to Northern Ireland veterans undergoing or awaiting treatment for both mental and physical health conditions.  The DMWS local NI Veterans Health team can be contacted via Email at referrals@dmws.org.uk, or by phone 0800 999 3697. Veterans can be reassured that continued veteran specific welfare assistance will remain available for the foreseeable future.

Veterans Welfare Service NI – Support offices and contact details.

While the closure of the NIVSO marks the end of an era, it also heralds a new chapter in the ongoing support of veterans in the region. The Office of Veterans’ Affairs will continue to represent Northern Ireland at a strategic level, ensuring that the needs of veterans are addressed and that they are not left behind, and further information on the OVA’s role in NI will be made clear before NIVSO officially closes. Veterans Champions in each Council area will also continue to endure, as a local point of contact to enable veterans to connect with local services and agencies in their communities. This connection is further supported by the VASP adviceline (Veterans Adviceline for Statutory Professionals) 07551 397384, helping to connect veterans with the appropriate service they need.

We express our sincerest appreciation to everyone involved with the NIVSO for their outstanding contributions. 

Danny Kinahan

Northern Ireland Veterans Commissioner

A strong voice for NI Veterans