Santa Run fun with Christmas market

Mike Sheldrick, course lecturer and deputy head of learning, with veterans on the inaugural Building Heroes course

Mike Sheldrick, course lecturer and deputy head of learning, with veterans on the inaugural Building Heroes course

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Building Heroes, a West Sussex based charity that retrains military veterans in building trades skills, needs help to raise funds.

People of all ages are urged to join in the charity’s 5km Santa Fun Run and visit the Christmas market at Chichester College’s Brinsbury Campus, near Pulborough, on Saturday.

Organisers say it promises to be a fun event and a £20 donation will secure a fun run place. Register online at www.buildingheroes.org.uk/events

Brendan Williams, chief executive, said: “We are entirely reliant on fundraising, sponsorship and donations to provide this vital service as there is no government funding available, so we are very grateful to every runner who signs up and attends our Santa Run and Christmas market.”

Building Heroes was formed in 2013 to help military veterans with the transition into civilian life.

The charity formed a partnership with Chichester College earlier this year and the free Building Heroes five-week residential property maintenance courses are now delivered at Brinsbury.

Ex-soldiers find the rural setting and the support of both college and charity staff have provided not only the skills they need but the confidence and motivation to progress into a second career.

Abbie Porter, media, marketing and events specialist, explained: “This year we established our training partnership with Chichester College, which delivers our course. Since then, we have trained more than 30 veterans.

“Throughout the programme we work with the veterans to identify an appropriate career path for them, whether it’s employment, self- employment or further training.

“However, we rely on voluntary contributions to retrain our veterans.”

It is estimated there are 120,000 unemployed military veterans of working age in the UK today, with another 15,000 leaving the forces each year.

Many have to end their military service early due to physical or mental trauma and are left unsure what to do with their futures.

For ways to donate, visit www.buildingheroes.org.uk

Have you checked out our new Christmas section yet?

It’s packed with ideas and tips to ensure you make the most out of the festive season.

There’s recipes, suggestions for presents and everything from choosing your tree to recycling your packaging and paper.

Go to www.chichester.co.uk/christmas/