Businesses pledge support to Armed Forces and Veterans

North East BIC

A number of local businesses have pledged their unwavering support to the nation’s armed forces and veterans at a momentous event held by the North East BIC in Sunderland.

The successful signing event organised in collaboration with the Armed Forces Covenant, witnessed an incredible turnout with 10 businesses committing to support our servicemen and women.

The signing event was spearheaded by the BIC’s Armed Forces Ambassador and veteran Anthony McDermott and hosted alongside Darren Rhodes representing the covenant. They were also joined by Lieutenant Antonio Valente, the Assistant Naval Regional Commander for Northern England & Isle of Man. The presence of Lieutenant Valente underscored the significance of the event, highlighting the collective commitment to honouring and supporting our armed forces and veterans.

Anthony said: “This event marks a significant milestone in our ongoing commitment to our nation’s heroes. The overwhelming support from local businesses showcases the community’s dedication to ensuring that our armed forces and veterans receive the recognition and assistance they deserve.

“This effort adds to the commendable seven businesses that had previously signed the pledge during the graduation ceremony of our recent Veterans RV project in December, bringing the total number of supportive businesses to an impressive 17 via the BIC.”

In 2022, the BIC signed up to the Armed Forces Covenant, a promise that those who have served in the Armed Forces, and their families, are treated with fairness and respect.

As holder of the Silver Award for this Employer Recognition Scheme, the BIC is encouraging and supporting other local organisations to sign up too.

Darren Rhodes, Regional Employer Engagement Director on behalf of the covenant added: “The BIC exemplifies a beacon of support and opportunity for our veterans.

“Their steadfast dedication to providing inclusive environments and providing tailored resources ensures that our servicemen and women receive the recognition and assistance they deserve as they transition into civilian life.The BIC’s unwavering commitment sets a remarkable standard for community engagement and support.”

The BIC’s dedication to supporting veterans extends beyond symbolic gestures. They are actively working towards achieving Gold status on the Employer Recognition Scheme this year, further solidifying their commitment to providing tangible support to veterans and their families.

In a further effort to continue to provide a supportive environment, the BIC will also be hosting free-to-attend “Veterans in Business” networking events throughout the year.

Held at the North East BIC in Sunderland, the event aims to bring together veterans who are now working in various businesses across the region, providing them with opportunities for networking, collaboration, and support.

The BIC remains resolute in its mission to serve those who have served our nation, and initiatives like these demonstrate their dedication to supporting veterans as they transition into civilian life.

For more information about the event, interested parties can contact

For more information about the Armed Forces Covenant visit

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