Thriving Families

Back view of a member of the armed forces walking outside with a woman and toddler

Understanding and improving support for the families of military personnel and veterans is one of the VFI's core research strands. Our Thriving Families research aims to make a positive difference to families by underpinning the development of national government policy, and by helping charities and service providers innovate and improve support to their beneficiaries.

The Thriving Families research theme is led by Dr Hilary Engward and aims to explore the diverse holistic wellbeing and needs of veteran families, an under-researched area in the UK. Using various social science research methodologies, we seek to understand what constitutes the diverse structure of the veteran family and their health and wellbeing needs over the life course.

For more information about the Thriving Families theme, email

The projects that make up the Thriving Families research programme have been generously funded by the Forces in Mind Trust.

Evaluating the Ministry of Defence's Spouse Employment Support Trial

Evaluating support for Early Service Leavers

Caring and Coping

Other significant research projects