Saving lives – Making a difference

Breaking Ground Heritage (BGH) save lives – it’s a fact – this group, formed in 2015, was set up by former Royal Marine Dickie Bennet to enable military veterans of recent wars to gain solace and recovery through undertaking archaeology.

So far, hundreds of people have shared the passion for heritage as a result of this work. BGH assesses the wellbeing of participants and uses this data to help design future programmes and to ensure that the outcomes for beneficiaries are as positive as possible – be they a desire to become archaeologists, embarking on an academic journey, or simply meeting with new and like-minded friends. It is not unusual for BGH to hear that their timely intervention has prevented a suicide. And then came the virus Overnight the group’s revenue dried up, projects also disappeared and this at a time when the wellbeing and mental health of the very people that the project was designed to assist was being tested the most.

Left to right Matt Smith (BGH), Al Murray , Dickie (BGH) and me at chalke valley history festival with a 1917 wooden tank made as a result of an HLF grant to BGH vets

BGH knows that, as soon as the requirement for social distancing is lifted, it will be called upon immediately to help veterans (some of whom are back helping the NHS right now)

So they are in desperate need of funds to plan and prepare so that it can begin right away, with no delays. However, thanks to complications that are bessting us all the prospect of any income for this vital work has becomes next to impossible.

Dickie with BGH volunteer and veteran at Rat Island forensics training

Thus, a crowd-funding campaign has been set up by Richard Osgood as BGH assists his Op Nightingale programme amongst others. This is a time where good causes are calling on the support of the public like never-before and BGH is no exception. Even small donations make a difference and the aim is to raise £10,000 to ensure a full programme can begin on day 1 of the new world.

BGH aims to provide skills passports (BAJR is providing 50 passports free of charge) to participants, to feed them, to provide assessments and training, to provide the equipment they need to excavate, and to provide a safe place for them to feel valued and to improve situations.

Please give, and know that every penny will be spent well and can genuinely save lives of people who have volunteered their all. Thank you.

Richard Osgood and David Connolly

Start giving here:
https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/bgh

BGH veterans on sites

(BAJR Note)
This is one of those rare moments where you can see archaeology make a difference. I know you are all in the same boat as me – loss of income, uncertain future, a hard time now and for the foreseeable. However, this matters, this really matters. These people gave more than you can imagine. All those I meet are deserving of respect and a little help. And yes, I will confess I am a trustee of the Charity. If you can’t spare anything, that’s ok… but you can share this, and others might . tell newspapers tell your friends, tell anyone, but lets ensure that Breaking Ground Heritage are one of those that weathers the storm… they deserve it.

BGH veterans on sites