How Military Charities Will Use My Personal Information

The personal data you give when you ask for support is added to a secure database managed and held by SSAFA on behalf of the Armed Services’ charity sector. 

Official staff only look at your data to help direct you to the most relevant charity partner(s). 

You will only be asked to give personal information to allow an assessment of your needs to be made. If needed, a copy of your information may be shown to other organisations who may be able to help you. 

It will also be shared with the Ministry of Defence and its agencies, to confirm your service in the Armed Forces. 

This military charity (the data controller and data processor) working with you, also known as the facilitating military charity, is SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity. 

If you have a question about your application, your caseworker will be able to help you. 

Please note that with the data we collect about you, you can: 

  • Ask for access to your personal data such as copies and other information about what we do with your data.

  • Ask that we change any incorrect personal data we have about you.

  • Request that we delete your personal data, if it is no longer needed by us.

  • Make an objection about our processing of your personal data.

  • Limit the processing of your personal data.

Please note that in some cases, we may need to balance your request against other legal rights and duties we have. However, if you are not satisfied with our response, you have a right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) (for details, see 

As part of your application we may ask for, or you may give us, information about your physical or mental health, ethnic origin, genetic/biometric identifiers, religious, philosophical or political views, trade union membership, sex life and any criminal convictions or offences. 

This type of information is called ‘sensitive personal data’ (also known as Special Categories of Personal Data)

This sensitive personal data will only be shared with support organisations who we think may be able to help you and your specific needs. You are under no obligation to provide this information but without it, this may limit the help we can provide. 

Your personal information may be used in the following ways: 

  • Shared with other organisations so that we can meet your needs and find you better support.

  • Anonymised data will be kept to look at statistical information so that the organisations involved can improve their work.

  • Your application will be kept as part of our casework support files (to understand and record the individual needs and categories of our beneficiaries) and assist in preventing fraud.

  • We will not look to use your personal information for any other reason than in connection with this application and for giving support. Your personal information will not be used for another purpose without your knowing and agreeing to it, unless we legally have to.

  • We undertake that all data captured will be dealt with lawfully in accordance with applicable data protection law and other relevant legislation. The lawful grounds on which we process your data will be based on one or more of the following, depending on the situation:

  • Where the processing is necessary in our (or a partner organisation’s) genuine interests as a charity or support provider. This is as long as this meets with your reasonable expectations and does not unreasonably interfere with your privacy rights. Normally this will be the reason for processing your data but this may change dependent on your personal circumstances.

  • We have your consent to use this data (or your explicit consent in relation to sensitive personal data).

  • Where we are under a legal duty to use or show your data.

  • Where the processing of your data (including sensitive personal data) is in your or someone else’s vital interests such as a critical health, welfare or security issue.

  • Where necessary to perform a contract to which you are a party or steps at your request to enter into a contract; and/or;

  • For sensitive personal data, we may need to use your data as necessary for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims.

When your information is passed to another support organisation, they will then look at the best way to find you support. Different organisations have their own privacy policies and they may be different to this policy. To find out more, please check with the support organisation, either by contacting them or looking on their website. 

Your caseworker can provide a list of the organisations that have been approached as part of your application. 

When collected, your data will be held by us and other support organisations for purposes in accordance with data retention policies that have been established in accordance with statutory requirements and codes of practice issued by the ICO. 

Some organisations that provide funding to meet your application may retain records of the payment for up to seven years for accounting purposes. Please note that where a grant is awarded, the organisation providing that grant will retain this information for at least seven years. Please contact us or your relevant support organisation if you want more information about specific data retention policies. 

For data enquiries only, please contact SSAFA’s data governance manager, via