Over the last few weeks, Emma and I have been visiting Team H4H. We are stepping down from our executive roles but will, of course, remain the Co Founders of this extraordinary charity; you haven't seen the last of us yet I'm afraid!
It's pretty emotional clearing out one's office and preparing to move into a different role but change is inevitable in all our lives and now is the right time to hand over our 'baby'. We know that Team H4H will welcome Mel Waters as my successor and ensure that H4H and our support to 'the blokes' continues for years to come.
People talk about the success of H4H and while it has certainly been an extraordinary nine years, I think that success is the wrong word; I prefer to call it a responsibility that comes with deciding to do something to help.
I believe that if we are to maintain our democratic and peaceful way of life, we have to ask young men and women to volunteer to serve in our Armed Forces, then it is the duty of all of us to help them if they suffer as a consequence.
That responsibility does not lie just with Government, the MoD or military charities, it lies with every citizen of this country; it is our debt of honour, our national debt.
Government has a duty of care to our servicemen and women, the Military Covenant prescribes that. The charities however, don't have to exist, there is no law telling us what to do; we do our bit because we want to make a difference.
We don't have a duty of care, we want to help because we care.
Nine years ago I stood up and made my first speech as the new CEO of H4H and outlined that what we wanted to do was very simple. I explained, rather nervously, that this new charity would do what it could to help 'the blokes'.
Nine years later, as Emma and I have visited the team and met some of the blokes, I think we have done that. I would have been pleased if we had fulfilled our responsibility to just one 'bloke', but we've done more than that, we have made a difference to many.
There can be no better reward in life than to know that you have helped those who need a hand. Equally there is no greater responsibility than knowing that we have really only just begun. This extraordinary support must continue, as Prince Harry said, long after the guns have fallen silent. We must not fail or forget.
Thank you all for the extraordinary support you have given this great cause over the last nine years, it has rebuilt and in many cases, saved lives. I know we leave Team H4H in good hands and I am confident that the support will continue, evolve and endure with your help.
Thank you all
Onwards and Upwards!
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