An Ipswich veteran-turned social entrepreneur has been honoured at 10 Downing Street in recognition of his support for fellow former armed forces personnel.
Nigel Seaman, founder of Combat2Coffee, was invited to Tuesday’s Local Veteran Champions’ Reception by the town’s MP Tom Hunt, alongside fellow veterans from across the country.
The event was hosted by veterans’ affairs minister Johnny Mercer MP to honour veterans and give them the chance to share their views on the support available to former armed forces personnel.
Nigel said: “It was a genuine privilege to have been invited to Downing Street and speak about the things that truly matter to us veterans.
“Mr Mercer came straight to talk to me as soon as he arrived – and it is amazing to think the Combat2Coffee story has made its way to Whitehall. He even offered to help serve our coffee at a future event!
“There is so much more that can be done to help veterans and ensure they have the access to the mental health support they need.
“Events like this are a great way to get that point across and I am very grateful for the opportunity to attend alongside so many veterans who have dedicated their lives to serving our country.”
Founded in 2019, Combat2Coffee offers mental health support to veterans, prisoners and their families to help them return to civilian life.
It is the brainchild of former Royal Anglian infantryman and prison officer Nigel, who has experienced post-traumatic stress disorder since he left the army in 2004.
Tom Hunt has supported Nigel and Combat2Coffee since being elected in 2019 and has raised points on veterans’ affairs on Nigel’s behalf in the House of Commons.
He said: “Nigel is a shining example of a man who has dedicated his life to not only serving our country, but supporting his fellow heroes too.
“His story is nothing short of inspiring and I am so proud of everything he has achieved with Combat2Coffee to date.
“I look forward to continuing supporting Nigel and the amazing work he is doing in our town and beyond.”
More information on Combat2Coffee and its mission to change the world, one sip at a time can be found at www.combat2coffee.co.uk.