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Media releases

The Hon Darren Chester MP
Minister for Veterans and Defence Personnel


18 June 2019

Veterans’ Health Week to focus on mental health

Supporting the mental health and wellbeing of veterans will be the key focus for this years’ Veterans’ Health Week to be held from 26 October to 3 November 2019.

Minister for Veterans and Defence Personnel, Darren Chester said supporting veterans’ health was a top priority for the Government and Veteran Health Week was just one opportunity for veteran and community organisations to get involved.

“We are providing $200,000 in funding to assist community groups and ex-service organisations to put on events promoting health and wellbeing for veterans and their families,” Mr Chester said.

“Running or participating in an event is a fantastic way to raise awareness around the health concerns or challenges that veterans may face and I encourage anyone with an idea to consider making an application.

“The week encourages the community to connect and support each other and further their understanding of the support that is available to veterans through the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

“While planning for Veterans’ Health Week events has already started, this also serves as an important reminder of the support available. If, or when, you need help, it is there for you.”

The Government is committed to putting veterans and their families first and invests more than $200 million a year towards supporting the mental health of veterans.

Additional funding is supporting further initiatives to encourage wellness of our veterans and their families.

Veterans who have served one full day in the Australian Defence Force can access free mental health treatment and also have access to a veteran-specific lifeline through Open Arms — Veterans and Families Counselling, whether that condition is service related or not.

AT-Ease — DVA’s online wellbeing portal, also provides veterans and their families with information, resources and links to services for support with mental health and wellbeing.

For more information on Veterans’ Health Week and the funding available, visit the Veterans’ Health Week page on the DVA website for more information. You can also call 1800 555 254 or email Applications to host an event close on 12 July.



Rachel Tharratt: 02 6277 7820
DVA Media: 02 6289 6466

Office of the Hon Darren Chester, Canberra ACT

Open Arms — Veterans and Families Counselling provides support for current and ex-serving ADF personnel and their families. Free and confidential help is available 24/7. Phone 1800 011 046 (international: +61 8 8241 4546) or visit