Cornwall Works
Cornwall Works 50+ and 50+ Cares - Active Plus

Combat veterans who are amputees or suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD) are training vulnerable people aged over 50 in a groundbreaking new initiative supported through Cornwall Works 50+.

Active Plus follows on from Surf Action, a community interest company which supports combat veterans by teaching them to surf.  Both projects receive ESF Convergence funding via Cornwall Works 50+, led by Inclusion Cornwall.  Tim Cocks, Active Plus Director, explained:

“Some of the combat veterans who take part in Surf Action now feel they are more able to control their lives and are ready to look for a job.  Active Plus gives them that opportunity.  While teaching this group of over 50s the veterans gain a qualification and can then use that to find further employment and support other community projects.  The aim is also to give the over 50s more confidence and make them feel less isolated so they too want to find work.”

The activities are making a real difference to people’s lives.  John Wintle, a qualified carpenter from Porthleven, is one of those taking part in the course. He said:

“It has been really good so far. It has given me a different approach to things and we are all now thinking about setting up a social enterprise to offer a combination of our skills.”

Pip Harris, who lives in Liskeard and served in the Royal Navy, suffers from PTSD. He said:

“I still try to carry on serving the community as best I can.  I have been involved with Surf Action and this activity has allowed me to begin training and help others, and I am now honoured to be asked to join the team of Active Plus.”

Craig Foster lives in Bodmin, he served with the Prince of Wales division Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters and also suffers from PTSD which was triggered after he had retired from service in 2006, when someone from his village committed suicide. He said:

“I was unsure what to expect from the day and if I could do what was being asked of me, but within the first five minutes I was at ease and found the day one of the best things I have done since the incident in 2006.  I got so much out of it just by knowing that I had helped a group of people, and what a group they were, with so much knowledge and so many skills all across the board”.

For more information on Active Plus please call Tom Cocks on 07958 169320 or email tcocks@activeplus.org.uk