Afghanistan

Afghanistan: Calls To Mental Health Charity Helpline Rocket Following Taliban Resurgence

Combat Stress has seen a big increase in the number of calls from veterans as the situation has unfolded in Afghanistan.

A leading military mental health charity has said it has received double the average number of daily calls since the Taliban seized control of Afghanistan.

Combat Stress, a charity providing mental health services to veterans, said, on average, it normally receives 31 calls a day from veterans.

However, the charity's staff said they have received an increase in veterans contacting them for support – which they attribute to the crisis unfolding in Afghanistan.

On 16 August, staff received 70 calls, a 125% increase on the usual number, a further 50 calls on 17 August – a 61% increase – and a 103% increase – 63 calls – on 18 August.

Combat Stress provides specialist treatment and support for veterans from every service and conflict, focusing on those with complex mental health issues related to their military service.

Watch: Afghanistan triggers difficult emotions for military veterans.

Earlier this week, Prince Harry spoke out to encourage veterans to "offer support for one another", following the Taliban resurgence in Afghanistan.

Leo Docherty MP, Minister for Defence People and Veterans, also reached out to veterans who feel "traumatic memories may be returning" as events in Afghanistan unfold.

He acknowledged the "very disturbing images coming out of Kabul" and said help is available, adding support has come "a long way" since he served in Afghanistan.

If you or someone you know needs support at this time, you can find more information by visiting the British Army website and the Government's website.

Further details about support available can be found on our website.