Preparing for you son or daughter to go on operations or they have embarked on tour?
Pre- deployment meetings for next of Kin
The army hold these meetings all over the country prior to your son or daughter going on operations to Afghanistan. When your son/daughter announces the dreaded news, that they are going, remember to remind them that these meeting take place, and you would like to go, so that they remember to let you know the dates and ensure welfare has your address details. If you can't attend the meeting, and they have your details, they will send you a pre deployment package. The meetings and package are excellent, and it will prepare you practically with information that will help. BUT DON'T FORGET, your son/daughter will be very focused on preparing for their tour, and might need a few gentle reminders to ensure you are on the list.
If you miss out for some reason the following link is the booklet they give you that is available on line.
you can also contact your son or daughters regiments welfare department even if they have left on operations, and they will sent a pack out to you. You will need your son/daughters rank and number. If you do not have their number contact the general welfare number in our briefing room and they will put you through.
Army Casualty and compassionate advice
please see our briefing rooms for more detail if you are unsure of what these people do
Want to send your son or daughter a record request or message over the radio whilst he/she is on deployment?
follow the link to BFBS and let them know you are thinking of them
Want to keep in touch with your son/daughter whilst they are on operations? You can get your ebluey's free from the post office or the British forces post office - But the of the quickest ways is an E-bluey on line - you have to register but follow the link and there is a step by step guide -
Once in theatre, you son or daughter will be issued with a telephone (Paradigm) card, which is provided by the MOD. This gives them 30 minutes call time to ring you. However if your son/daughter rings you and asks you to top up the card you can find all the details and what to do on the following link -
Textlink and SMS
how to reply to a text message from the sands
Keeping up with the news
Uk forces Afghanistan
British Forces News
Collecting/meeting your loved ones from Brize Norton. Take a look at RAF Brize Norton Passenger Terminal Information Leaflet
How to address your parcel
Summer parcels April-October
Depending whether your son/daughter is in bastion, a F.O.B, or PB, their needs may vary, but when they phone you and you can ask about any of things they need.
PARCELS MUST BE 2KG OR UNDER IN WEIGHT AND WRAPPED REALLY WELL, they will take a beating on their travels. Use bubble wrap around items that are a little more vulnerable, AND LABELED CLEARLY,using your BFPO number. You will also be asked to put customs labels on each one, which you can obtain from the post office, when you are there, the items do not need to be written on the label individually, a general term like confectionary etc can be used.
In the really hot months, temperatures can rise as high as 50 centigrade Choclate may arrive in a sticky mess.
TOILETRIES:-sun lotion/after sun/lip balm/ hand sanitiser/hand lotion/moisturiser/ baby wipes/tissues/ shower gel/sponges/puffs /roll on deodorant/ tooth paste/brushes/floss/loo paper depending where they are
PERSONAL CHEMIST ITEMS
pro plus/ energy supplements/insect repellent /bite cream/fly papers/squatters/Anadin/paracetamol/painkillers/Imodium/athlete's foot powder.
desk top fans (argos 1.75kg)£11.99/t.shirts/boxer/shorts/shorts/socks/flip flops/sandwich bags/tuppaware containers-used to keep sand and dust out of phones etc/ NEWSPAPERS AND MAGAZINES/ Books
Pillows/ cotton sheets send in vacume bags then wrapped or boxed.
scrabble/playing cards /dominoes. Cricket bats and balls -table tennis, water guns and paddling pools, travel games, and board games
Any tin foods ,best with a ring pull if possible- ie-fruit,tuna beans,hot dogs, plastic bottles of sauce, herbs, flavourings, oxos ...to add to their noodles or ration packs. The plastic containers of fresh fruit, jelly, and puddings are safe to send just wrap them individually in bubble wrap and put in your box.
squash squash, squash!!!!! Sainsbury's do a short bottle which fits a shoe box. All sorts of different teas etc, anything is a change from water.
Cuppa soups/ Instant mash/noodles/custard/pasta/soup ...ie(things they can add boiling water too) small cereal boxes/cereal bars.
Crisps/snacks/Biscuits/ chewing gum/ tic-tacs/ Boiled sweets/mints. carton drinks
DO NOT SEND
Alcohol or items containing alcohol
Pornography (this is a muslim country and will be offensive to their culture)
Bladed items e.g. Knives, cut throat razors etc
Fizzy drinks (they have the danger of exploding in the cargo hold)
PLEASE BARE IN MIND HOW HOT IN CAN GET DURING SUMMER MONTHS IN AFGHANISTAN, AND HOW LONG IT TAKES FOR PARCELS TO GET THERE SO DO NOT SEND ANY PERISHABLE ITEMS FROM THE CHILLER AREA , SUCH AS COOKED MEATS ,YOGURTS, CHEESE ETC..
this a link to the BFPO website if you are still unsure of what or what not to send
ADDED suggestions for winter tours
Bits and pieces CHOCOLATE won't melt!!!
Clothing Woolly hats, Gloves (thermal),Thermals, Long Johns
Miscellaneous hand warmers to put in gloves, Books
If you son/daughter is coming to the end of their tour, and you are not sure if your last parcels will reach him in time, you can pop an extra label on it saying that the parcel can be given to another soldier if yours has left.