The Hon Darren Chester MP
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs
Minister for Defence Personnel
ARMY CONNECTS WITH ISOLATED
VETERANS TO COMMEMORATE ANZAC DAY
RSL Queensland members who have been isolated due to coronavirus restrictions
have received phone calls from Australian Army personnel to check on their
welfare and swap stories.
Queensland have teamed up with Brisbane’s 7th Combat Brigade for the Virtual
Veteran Visit initiative to identify a number of veterans who could benefit
from a phone call from a currently serving member, and connect as they usually
would on Anzac Day.
for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel, Darren Chester said with the
cancelation of Anzac Day services around Australia, there would be many people
at risk of feeling isolated on a day Australians normally come together, and
this initiative was one way to keep veterans connected.
Australians traditionally gather in large numbers, at its heart, Anzac Day is
always a moment of personal reflection,” Mr Chester said.
Virtual Veteran Visit initiative enables the connection between current serving
members and veterans to be maintained during these challenging times.
phone calls may seem like a small gesture from our current serving members,
however due to the coronavirus pandemic and the need to stay home, it is more
important than ever that we find ways for our veterans to still be able to
commemorate Anzac Day.
Anzac Day will look different this year, I encourage all Australians to take
time to pause and reflect on the service and sacrifice of the over 102,000
Australians who have died in wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations in a
way that is meaningful to them.”
of the selected veterans has provided information about their service history
which will enable personnel from 7th Combat Brigade to personalise their
conversation with each veteran.
Queensland General Manager Veteran Services Rob Skoda said 7th Brigade’s
initiative was a great example of the bonds that existed between all those who
are very grateful that 7th Brigade has made this effort to reach out to our
veteran community during these uncertain times,” Mr Skoda said.
of our older veterans particularly look forward to Anzac Day, which gives them
an opportunity not only to connect with their old mates, but to interact with
younger, current serving servicemen and women as well.
know that many of them are feeling the loss of this social interaction, especially
those who have been isolated by the COVID-19 restrictions.
Veteran Visits will ensure that they know that — despite the current unusual
circumstances — they have not been forgotten.”
year, all Australians are encouraged to tune in to the nationally televised
Anzac Day commemorative service at the Australian War Memorial. The
coverage will be broadcast nationally on ABC from 5am.
Rachel Tharratt: 02 6277 7820
Defence Media: (02) 6127 1999
Office of the Hon Darren Chester, Canberra ACT.