New app launched to combat loneliness among veterans

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A new app has been launched by a veterans charity to combat loneliness within the ex-Forces community.

Blesma, a charity that supports limbless veterans with the move back to civvy street and beyond resettlement, has created Blesma Connects.

The app encourages veterans to communicate with each other, sharing experiences and providing peer support.

SUPPORT

With loneliness and isolation affecting one in four veterans, the app will provide ongoing connectivity to ex-service members via the chat function. It will also offer personalised information and content tailored to each member’s interests and needs. 

Blesma Connects is the first app of its kind, created exclusively for charity members. As well as the opportunity to connect with other likeminded members of the ex-services community who have also experienced limb-loss, it will also provide information including medical info, grants, welfare counselling, national events and local meetings.

Coinciding with the launch of the app, Blesma will be offering digital inclusion sessions for members who wish to upskill their technological knowledge. The sessions will be run by Blesma’s outreach officers and digital ambassadors across the UK.

RESEARCH

The decision to launch Blesma Connects comes following a six-month research and 18-month development programme. Charity members, staff and support officers advised they would like more frequent updates from the charity along with increased opportunities to connect with other members.

Blesma provides life-long support to 3,000 members, and has been connecting limbless and injured veterans with one another since World War One.

The app is now available to download from the iTunes Store and Google Play. It’s also compatible with accessibility settings on devices including screen readers, font sizes and dexterity controls. 

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