A Renfrewshire MSP was impressed by the high standard of accommodation and new specialist services for armed service veterans of working age when visiting Erskine’s Veterans Village in Bishopton.
Natalie Don, MSP for Renfrewshire North and West enjoyed a tour led by Erskine’s Chief Executive, Ian Cumming, and Head of Facilities and Support Services, Dougie Beattie, around David Boyle Court, the charity’s recently opened £4 million state-of-the-art residential development.
The new facility is offering residents of the 24 apartments a two-year tenancy and a bespoke support package, tailored to suit each veteran’s needs, including volunteering, training, and work experience, as well as job opportunities with local business partners.
Don said: “It is always a pleasure to visit Erskine’s Veterans Village and I was delighted to see the apartments and communal facilities in the amazing new David Boyle Court development as well as the refurbished workshop and leisure rooms in the Reid McEwan Activity Centre, which are both fantastic spaces providing engaging services and activities for veterans from throughout the west of Scotland.
“I was grateful to Ian and Dougie for showing me around David Boyle Court and explaining how the project’s person-centred employability support has already started to equip veterans of working age with the skills to move onto sustained employment and long-term accommodation in communities of their choice.
“I appreciated getting an insight into the employment challenges faced by especially younger veterans who often leave the armed services before developing their skillsets or gaining experiences. The training and work opportunities offered by this project will clearly be of great value in enhancing their career prospects as they adjust to civilian life.
“Each time I visit Veterans Village, I become even more impressed by the charity’s innovative developments and the wonderful support provided by their staff and volunteers to improve everyday life for many people who have served the country!”
Wing Commander Ian Cumming, Chief Executive of Erskine, said: “We were pleased to welcome Natalie to Erskine’s Veterans Village and showcase some of the wide range of facilities and services we offer people who have left military service – including our brand new David Boyle Court project which is giving veterans time and space to get the best possible support to develop and showcase their talents, as they re-prepare for civilian life.”
Main Photo: (from Left to Right) Ian Cumming – the Chief Executive of Erskine, Dougie Beattie – Erskine’s Head of Facilities and Support Services and Natalie Don MSP