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Op COURAGE: the Veterans Mental Health and Wellbeing Service

Op COURAGE is an NHS mental health specialist service designed to help serving personnel due to leave the military, reservists, armed forces veterans and their families.


How Op COURAGE can help

Op COURAGE can help you and your family with a range of support and treatment, including:

  • helping you transition from military to civilian life by providing mental health care with Defence Medical Services (DMS)

  • helping you recognise and treat early signs of mental health problems, as well as more advanced mental health conditions and psychological trauma

  • providing support and treatment for substance misuse and addictions

  • helping you to access other NHS mental health services if you need them, such as finding an NHS talking therapies service and eating disorder services

  • liaising with charities and local organisations to support your wider health and wellbeing needs, such as help with housing, relationships, finances and employment

  • supporting armed forces families affected by mental health problems, including helping them to access local services


Who will I speak to?

Op COURAGE is an NHS service supported by trained professionals who are from, or have experience of working with, the Armed Forces community.

This service can help if you’re finding life difficult after leaving the military. Working together with Armed Forces charities, Op COURAGE will help you get the right type of specialist care, support and treatment for your specific needs.


Who Op COURAGE can help

To receive help and support from Op COURAGE, you must:

  • be a resident in England and have served in the UK armed forces for a full day

  • be registered with a GP surgery in England, or be willing and eligible to register with a GP

  • provide your military service number

It does not matter how long ago you left the armed forces or how long you served for. You can contact Op COURAGE even if you left many years ago.

You can also contact Op COURAGE if you're still serving but have a discharge date.


Contacting Op COURAGE

You can contact the service in many ways, including:

  • directly getting in touch yourself, or through a family member or friend

  • asking a GP or other healthcare representative to refer you

  • asking a charity to refer you

The service will arrange for you to have an assessment, to make sure you get the right care and support.

It's important to contact the Op COURAGE service for your local area. This allows them to give you the best support they can provide.

North of England

Call 0300 373 3332 or email

The Midlands

Call 0300 323 0137 or email

The East of England

Call 0300 034 9991 or email


Call 020 3317 6818 or email

South East England

Call 0300 365 2000 (option 4) or email

South West England

Call 0300 034 9986 or email




Combat Stress

If you need to talk to someone, Combat Stress have a dedicated mental health support helpline for veterans and their families.

This provides confidential advice and support and is free to call for veterans, family members and carers.


The helpline number is 0800 138 1619, and it’s available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Samaritans offers a safe place for you to talk, any time, in your own way, about whatever is bothering you. We are here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We are confidential, free to call and will support anyone. If you are given the time and space to talk things through, you can find a way through your problems. Samaritans help you to explore your options so you can make decisions that are right for you.

Telephone: 116 123


Icarus Online provides immediate care, assessment, and rehabilitation for uniformed services

Military, Veterans, Uniformed Services, and their families.

We Help People With Post Traumatic Stress, Insomnia, Flashbacks, Nightmares, Anxiety & Panic Attacks, Addictions, Depression, Isolation & Loneliness, Suicidal Thoughts And Attempts, Anger, Fears And Family Relationships


Telephone: 0333 987 5055


SHOUT Text Crisis Line

If you need immediate support, you can text SHOUT to 85258 and chat by text. The service is free on most networks and available 24/7, and trained volunteers will listen to you, and work with to help you take the next steps towards feeling better.



If you are under 35 years of age and are having thoughts of suicide or are concerned for a young person who might be you can contact HOPELINEUK for confidential support and practical advice.

Telephone: 0800 068 4141

Text: 07860039967



Opening hours:

9am – 10pm weekdays, 2pm – 10pm weekends, 2pm – 10pm bank holidays

Our Suicide Prevention Advisers are ready to support you.

Anxiety UK

Advice and support for people living with anxiety.

Telephone: 03444 775774 
Textline: 07537 416905 


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The Black Dog Walking Club is an idea by The Veterans Charity to help combat loneliness and mental health challenges amongst Veterans and their spouses/partners.


The club is open to all over 18's and currently meets on the 3rd Sunday of a month at 10am in the car park of The Rockpool Bar, Gwithian, TR27 5ED.

The North Devon Club also meets monthly in Barnstaple. Please check the Black Dog Walking Club Facebook Page for meeting dates and general information.

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