Abbreviations and Terminology - A list of Who's Who


CO – Commanding Officer

Responsible for the welfare of all soldiers under their command and their families.

2IC – 2nd in Command

Assists the Commanding Officer

OC – Officer Commanding

Commands a sub unit within the Regiment

RSM – Regimental Sergeant Major

The RSM is the most senior non-commissioned officer in a unit. They will have been a soldier for many years and their knowledge and experience can assist with any issue you may have.

UWO – Unit Welfare Officer

The UWO is on hand to support soldiers and families with any welfare issue that you may have.

RAO – Regimental Administration Officer

The RAO can help with any financial issues you may have such as pay and allowances. The RAO can also be a good point of contact for information on managing finances.


The Padre is the unit or Garrison Chaplain and is on hand to offer spiritual support and prayer whatever your denomination.

RMO – Regimental Medical Officer

This is the unit doctor who is responsible for the healthcare of serving personnel.

WSO – Welfare Support Officer

The Army Welfare Service provides personal support and community support through a network of specialist teams throughout the UK. Teams are managed by Welfare Support Officers or (WSOs).

PSW – Personal Support Worker

The PSW is part of the AWS and is on hand to deal with any welfare issue that you may have. You can be referred to the AWS by your unit or contact them direct.

CDW – Community Development Worker

The CDW is responsible for providing clubs and activities for young people in the Garrison. The CDWwill also put together a comprehensive programme of events during school holidays.


AWS – Army Welfare Service

The AWS provides professional and confidential welfare support to serving personnel and their families.


The information service for the military community. Contact the HIVE for information on housing, education, healthcare, local amenities, employment, discounts and deployment support. For details of your local HIVE visit

AFF – Army Families Federation

The AFF exists to make life better for Army families by raising issues that are causing concerns with the chain of command The AFF publishes a FREE quarterly magazine, Army&You, which is distributed to all Army families world-wide.

For more information on the work that the AFF does and to find out who your local co-ordinator is visit

RAF – FF – Royal Air Force Families Federation

The RAF Families Federation represents the concerns of RAF personnel and their families on issues that effect them as part of an RAF family.

The RAF publishes a FREE quarterly magazine, Envoy, which is distributed to all RAF families world-wide.

For more information on the work that the RAF-FF does and to find out who your co-ordinator is visit

NFF – Navy Families Federation

The NFF do the same work as the AFF and the RAF-FF and also publish a magazine called Homeport. For more information on the NFF, visit


SSAFA is one of the UK’s leading Armed Forces charities. They provide practical, financial and emotional support to anyone who is currently serving or has served in the Army, Navy or RAF, and their families. Each year, we support more than 50,000 people in the Armed Forces community. They have been doing this for over 125 years and are one of Britain’s most trusted charities. For more information on SSAFA visit

Royal British Legion (RBL)

The RBL provides practical care, advice and support to serving members of the Armed Forces, veterans of all ages and their families. For more information on the RBL visit

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