Brigadier Greville Bibby and X-Forces invited military organisations and business leaders to meet in Newcastle and Catterick today to discuss transition opportunities for service-leavers in the North East.
The meeting was facilitated by Brigadier Greville Bibby, who retired in December as former Commander of 15 (North East) Brigade and maintains a keen interest in the welfare of the region’s servicemen and women, veterans, spouses and reservists. In a follow up to foundations laid earlier this year, the group looked at how the military communities have embraced the current opportunities in place to develop successful civilian careers, and further initiatives they could embark upon together.
In meetings facilitated by Anne-Marie Trevelyan MO, and in the presence of Brig Bibby, the UK’s key organisations joined X-Forces in contributing, including Help For Heroes, the Royal British Legion, the Career Transition Partnership (CTP), the Reserve and Cadet Forces and regional managers from the HIVE Network. Some of the region’s employers also joined the meeting to look at how they can provide a helping hand to do more in the North East.
X-Forces has helped to launch 55 businesses that are successfully trading in North East England and actively supported over 100 people with enterprise and business training and support. The social enterprise is looking to partner with other stakeholders to create a greater presence in the North East.
Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP said: “I am delighted that X-Forces are looking to expand their operation to the North East. I have been a long time supporter of Ren Kapur and the fantastic work she does with X-Forces for our military community. I am very keen to encourage businesses of all types to engage with this initiative that supports our veterans and their families in setting up on their own. As a member of the Armed Forces Parliamentary Scheme I know how important it is to give our veterans every chance to make a success of their lives and to find a second career once they have completed their service with the military.”
Ren Kapur, CEO and founder of X-Forces, said: “The North East has a strong military presence and high percentage of transitioning servicemen and women settling in the region. It is therefore of upmost importance that we have the resources in place to support them in carving a fulfilling civilian career. While enterprise may not have been the traditional choice for service-leavers a few years ago, with our support and rapidly growing network, we are enabling their military determination and focus to be applied effectively to running a business.”
Following the Newcastle meeting, Brig Bibby and X-Forces continued to Catterick to meet further stakeholders.