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April 19, 2024

Veteran Wellbeing Centre Highlights – Q1 2024

A lot has been happening to kick off 2024 at our Veteran Wellbeing Centres. Here are a few highlights from our network of Centres. 

Between January and March 2024, our Veteran Wellbeing Centres: 

  • Welcomed over 900 visitors 
  • Received a satisfaction rating of ‘satisfied’ or ‘very satisfied’ from 99% of visitors 
  • Hosted 61 on-site events 
  • Took part in 42 off-site events 

More locations, more access 

In our 2023 wrap-up, we mentioned that RSL LifeCare, in collaboration with RSL NSW, had progressed to developing business cases for four new centres across New South Wales under the Federal Government’s Veterans’ and Families’ Hubs initiative. Across the first quarter of 2024, it was announced that we were successful in securing funding for all four of these locations, as well as a one-off grant for a fifth location. This means that over the coming months and years, you will see new hubs open in Queanbeyan, the Central Coast, Hunter, Tweed-North Coast and the Hawkesbury! We are very excited to be able to deliver more services and access to veterans and their families in these communities. 

Nowra Veteran Wellbeing Centre 

Once a month (2nd Thursday at 2pm), a group of local veterans gather at the Nowra VWC to share memories, have a cuppa and catch up. The Veteran Corner is a partnership with Legacy Nowra and the Keith Payne VC Veteran Benefit Group, who often bring a piece of memorabilia to share with the group. February was particularly special as Beryl, a war widow aged 101 years young, was presented with a folder containing the special service records of her husband, a medic and prisoner of war who had been captured in Singapore. The Nowra VWC is proud to host this monthly gathering of veterans and their families. 

Riverina Veteran Wellbeing Centre 

The Riverina VWC hosted a powerful International Women’s Day Luncheon on March 8, 2024, at the International Hotel in Wagga Wagga. With a focus on ‘Becoming Agents of Change’, the event spotlighted the experiences of women, including current serving ADF members, veterans, and their partners. This theme aimed to explore ways to effect positive change within our sphere of influence, celebrating the unique lives of female veterans and partners living regionally and remotely.  Riverina Veteran Wellbeing Centre IWD Luncheon 2024

The luncheon welcomed 100 attendees and featured a compelling Q&A panel, providing an opportunity for the community to hear from three remarkable female leaders in their fields. Panellists included RSL LifeCare Chief Operating Officer, Nicki Young, Murrumbidgee Primary Health Network Senior Manager of Priority Populations, Anita McRae, and RAAF Base Wagga Base Warrant Officer, Jodi Peck. Their insights and discussions were truly inspiring, contributing to our goal of empowering women within our cohort to become #AgentsOfChange. 

The guest speaker, Stephanie Hodson CSC PSM, CEO of Relationships Australia, delivered an address that focused on the opportunities she had had to make effective change, one of those being the work she was involved in when the Vietnam Veterans and Family Counselling Service became Open Arms 

An inspiring inaugural event for International Women’s Day and we look forward to coming together again next year. 

Northern Beaches Veteran Wellbeing Centre 

This quarter has been an exciting one for the Northern Beaches VWC. We are now fully staffed with a Claims Advisor and a Veteran Support Coordinator – Financial Counsellor. The centre can now offer in-person or telephone appointments for both services directly in the Nothern Beaches Veteran Wellbeing Centre. 

Northern Beaches VWC is also a place where videogame enthusiasts can gather and enjoy their favourite games on one of our two consoles. We host monthly gaming sessions that are open to participants of all ages. Bring your family along and have a great time playing all the popular games that we have available. We’re excited to see how we compare to our other Veteran Wellbeing Centres in terms of gaming skills, so we’re looking forward to challenging them in the near future.  Northern Beaches Veteran Wellbeing Centre event - scale modelling


Hunter Veteran Wellbeing Centre 

The Hunter VWC had a busy start to 2024, hosting and taking part in several community engagement activities and ex-service organisation collaboration forums, including the School of Infantry ‘Family Day’ at Lone Pine Barracks and Defence Member & Family Support ‘Welcome to the Hunter’ event. Notably, the team also hosted the first Hunter Interagency Meeting for 2024this meeting is an assembly of various organisations and agencies within the Hunter region, focused on addressing the needs and concerns of veterans and their families. These meetings involve government departments, non-profit organisations, healthcare providers, and other stakeholders who provide services and support to veterans. The aim is to coordinate efforts, share resources, and ensure that veterans and their families in the Hunter region receive comprehensive care and assistance. These gatherings are crucial for fostering collaboration and improving the overall wellbeing of veterans and their families, particularly valuable as RSL LifeCare make plans for the purpose-built Hunter Veteran Wellbeing Centre as part of the Federal Government’s Veterans’ and Families’ Hubs initiative.     

Keep up to date on the activities happening at all of our Veteran Wellbeing Centres by following our social media channels: 

If you’d like to stay up to date on what the team is doing, please subscribe to our regular newsletter updates.

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