Is 2019 the year of the Military Spouse?

This year has gone at the speed of light, but it has been an exciting year in the military spouse world. We have had awards, new businesses launches, new personal development programmes and new voices helping to spread the word – that military spouses have skills, determination and a work ethic that cannot be matched, and we could quite possibly end up taking over the world. Just after we have done the school run, written a few emails, made some calls, hoovered and had a gin.

At the annual Heropreneurs Awards, the fabulous Lucy Mans, founder of Family Rule was awarded the Military Partner in Business Award. And Jess Sands from the inspiring The Independent Spouse was shortlisted for the Women in Defence awards Most Collaborative Award.

Some of us took the leap of faith and set up businesses. Like Kitty Campbell who started her ethically minded skin care range, Bee Balmy UK. And Erin Scarfe who started an online military community directory, MillyTree supporting small businesses. Not to mention DR M.E Claire Willsher who launched her health and wellbeing business.

Personal development opportunities increased thanks to SMSpouses starting their free social media training course, and Forces Families Jobs launching their comprehensive website for permanent or temporary jobs with businesses signed up to the Armed Forces Covenant.

And community conversation was improved thanks to people like Chris Keen who established #SpouseHour on Twitter, Military This Mum Runs launches running groups across patches, and the epic success of the Military Co-Working Hubs that are opening across the country providing some much needed socialising, collaboration and company for those working remotely.

Changing the perception of military spouses was Wendy Faux with her incredible photographic exhibition ‘Not Just A Wife’, our very own Heledd Kendrick who continued her national roadshow banging the drum on how awesome we all are, and Sarah Stone who published an article encouraging people to take a second look at the qualities and skills of a military spouse.

Strength and resilience were shown by people such as Jody Jones who swam the Channel to raise awareness of Blesma The Limbless Veterans, despite living with stage 4 cancer, and Forces Wives Challenge who continue to organise challenges that encourage, inspire and raise money.

For Recruit for Spouses, it has been a year where we welcomed our 3rd and 4th cohort of military spouses onto our Liquid Workforce. We reached the milestone of 8,000 billed hours of flexible, remote working for spouses – equating to over £70,000 going back into military homes. And we celebrated with people like Rusila Halofaki, a Liquid Workforce member who has achieved amazing success working with BAE Systems and who continues to support and encourage other Commonwealth military spouses out of underemployment and into reaching their potential.

Yep, 2019 was pretty, pretty, pretty good. But 2020 looks set to be even better as we build on all these great achievements. From Recruit for Spouses to you, we want to say a huge congratulations for everything achieved this year – no matter how small or how large and thank you for being on this journey with us. We literally couldn’t do it without all of you. Here is to an even more amazing year. Cheers!