I have just put a fundraising page online for the RAF Benevolent Fund, with a link in the sidebar here.
Fundraising for the RAFBF is a way of paying back the wonderful help and support they gave my family in my father’s last years. He had become increasingly immobile through Parkinson’s disease, and cognitively was not able any more to manage the household finances – my mother had to take over everything as well as look after him. The RAF Benevolent Fund put in a stairlift for Dad so he could stay at home, helped my mother sort out paperwork, bills and benefits and put her in touch with other ways of getting help and valuable advice. It really was a lifeline in difficult times. My brother was in America and I lived 3 hours away, and it was difficult to support our parents as much as we wanted, but the RAF Benevolent Fund proved to be Dad’s extended RAF ‘family’ when he really needed it.
The ‘Where They Served’ tour has many roots and one is the extended RAF family that meant so much to Dad during the war, and continued in the background throughout his life. Having written up his memoirs for publication in August this year (‘Flying Blind: the story of a night-fighter pilot’, Fonthill Media), I now feel in myself that sense of connection with the RAF. It has come home to nest – very unexpectedly and to my surprised delight – in me. Strange how connections are made in life without us seeking them, and bear such unlooked-for fruits!