Felix Fund, a charity supporting service men, women and families who are involved with or retired from Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) duties, is this year’s charity partner for DSEI.
It was also selected for the Security and Counter Terror Expo in May. Being chosen by the organisers of two of the world’s largest security exhibitions is hugely significant for meeting its aims to care for the mental and physical wellbeing of those who search for and disarm bombs in the armed forces and SO15 − the police force’s special counter terror unit.
DSEI event manager Sophie McKimm said: ‘‘We’ve chosen to partner with Felix Fund for this year’s event because it’s simply impossible to quantify what would happen to our bravest soldiers and their families if they were not able to receive help. Felix Fund is becoming interwoven in the world community of EOD, so we felt it was only right the world recognised its incredible efforts at this event.’’
Felix Fund’s chief executive Melanie Moughton said: ‘‘It is clear to everyone, I’m sure, what it means for a charity like ours to be sharing our story with national and international leaders in security. From my own family’s involvement with EOD, to every family and individual we support, it’s important to know that security leaders care for the commitments made. It’s an honour to represent them all at these huge events.’’
The charity’s mascot Felix will himself be at DSEI. A special show prize draw will be run and at £10 per ticket, all proceeds will be going towards helping bomb disposal heroes. To purchase a ticket, visitors need to visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/felixdsei2017 and donate £10. They will then receive a code via email − this must be brought to the Felix Fund Stand N8-296 at the show to be entered in the daily draw.
Representatives from the charity will be highlighting its latest ‘Dashboard Courses’, which are designed to help individuals see the ‘warning lights’ for mental health issues.
The charity acts to support those in desperate and rapidly deteriorating situations. In one scenario, a soldier on tour overseas whose dying father was at home in the UK was flown back by Felix Fund for a final goodbye. Recognising the need to support families with day-to-day stress and anxiety, however, the charity also makes grants to serving units and their bases. Outdoor adventure training has bonded teams and reunited friends, while updated facilities and accommodation have created spaces for increased relaxation.
Donations to Felix Fund can be made at www.felixfund.org.uk/support-us/make-a-donation/.