The Veterans’ Support Committee (VSC) was established in 1949 to support the 20,000 Canadian veterans of the two World Wars who remained in the UK after they took their discharge.

Since its founding, the VSC has provided practical and social assistance to veterans and their dependents. Each family receives quarterly payments plus a bonus for Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving and on the veteran’s birthday.

The VSC provides a lifeline for these veterans, many of whose circumstances are very difficult. For some, the money is used for life’s necessities; for others the emotional support is just as important. For some veterans or their surviving spouse, the VSC’s remembrance of a birthday or at Christmas is their only remaining contact with Canada.

VSC in the news

On the 4th of June 2014, the Bournemouth Daily Echo published a fascinating article and video about Eldon (Bob) Roberts. In the video, Bob recalls being the 2nd man in his Canadian unit to land on Juno Beach on D-Day in 1944.

Both the article and video demonstrate the sheer courage and fortitude this now 91 year-old displayed as a young man – it is a truly remarkable and heartwarming story. While posted in England, Bob met a young woman from Bournemouth whom he subsequently married and they decided to settle here after the war. The VSC is immensely proud to have been in touch with him in recent years. We thank him for allowing us to tell his story on our website – and we hope to continue providing him with support for many years to come.

In November 2013, the Globe and Mail published a story about one of the veterans who has been assisted by the VSC for many years, Austin Burnett. To read the article, click here.

How we help

The Maple Leaf Trust Emergency Fund was created in 2009 to help Veterans with unexpected and urgent financial assistance. Veterans and their dependents can apply for this assistance through contacting the Veterans Affairs Canada office in London (telephone 020 7258 6339). These emergency funds are intended to help with the following:

  • Annual subscriptions for alarm call buttons in the home
  • Mobility aids, such as wheelchairs, walking frames, electric recliners, zimmer frames etc
  • Unexpectedly high utility bills
  • Respite care
  • Assistance following flooding or fires in the home
  • Small modifications to the home to make the environment safer and easier to negotiate, such as the installation of grab rails, etc
  • Housekeeping while recovering from illness or surgery
  • Annual cold weather payments when necessary to more than 40 recipients of ANCVO*.

These examples are not exhaustive and every application will be considered on its own merits.

Your support of the Maple Leaf Trust will allow the VSC to continue to help these needy Canadian veterans in their final years.

*ANCVO is a benefit paid to means tested Veterans. For more information on the benefits paid to Canadian Veterans living in the UK, please contact Veterans Affairs Canada on the number above.