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Media releases

The Hon Darren Chester MP
Minister for Veterans' Affairs
Minister for Defence Personnel

Senator Jim Molan AO DSC
Senator for New South Wales

Media release

Tuesday, 20 October 2020

RSL LifeCare at centre of wellbeing for regional NSW veterans

VETERANS and their families on the south coast of New South Wales will soon be able to access their support services in the one location with the announcement today that RSL LifeCare will lead and deliver the Veteran Wellbeing Centre in Nowra.

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Darren Chester and Senator for New South Wales Jim Molan AO DSC announced today that RSL LifeCare had been selected after extensive consultation with the local ex-service community.

“RSL LifeCare has great local knowledge and expertise, providing practical support designed to assist veterans in health and welfare, including their contribution in assisting homeless veterans,” Mr Chester said.

“They have many years of experience supporting the veteran community and I am confident in their ability to achieve positive outcomes for veterans and their families in regional NSW.

“The Nowra Wellbeing Centre will, once completed, provide a central point for veterans and their families to access assistance from government, health services, ex-service organisations (ESOs) and community groups.

“I applaud RSL LifeCare and RSL NSW for their hard work and ongoing assistance to provide the serving and ex-serving community in NSW with high quality and specialised support.”

The Government’s $30 million investment in a network of six Veterans' Wellbeing Centres will put veterans and their families first, bringing together organisations that currently provide them with services and support

Senator for New South Wales Jim Molan AO DSC says, “It gives me great pleasure to see that a terrific organisation such as RSL LifeCare will run the Nowra Veterans’ Wellbeing Centre.”

“This centre will be a fantastic way for local veterans to gain greater independence and receive better support. I look forward to visiting this great centre when it opens,” Senator Molan said.

“The commitment of $5 million towards the Nowra Wellbeing Centre at the last election is another example of how the Morrison Government is putting veterans and their families first.”

RSL LifeCare Board Chairman Andrew Condon says “We are very proud to have been selected by Department of Veterans’ Affairs and RSL NSW to design, build, own and operate the Nowra Veterans’ Wellbeing Centre.

“The RSL LifeCare strategic plan focuses heavily on our role in service delivery for veterans, and this centre represents a further milestone in our 100-year plus history of enriching the lives of veterans.”

CEO of RSL LifeCare Laurie Leigh says, “We plan to continue to engage with the local community to determine the resources and services most needed by veterans in Nowra and the surrounding regions.

“The centre will become a ‘one-stop shop’ for veteran support services, integrating both physical and virtual spaces.” 

RSL NSW Acting President Ray James says, "From the outset this has been a project by the local community, for the local community, and we thank the many local RSL sub-Branch volunteers, ESOs and community service providers that collaborated with us to get to this exciting milestone today.

“We look forward to working with our partner charity RSL LifeCare and these many other local providers in delivering quality and responsive support services to veterans and current serving personnel and their families in the Nowra, Illawarra and the greater Shoalhaven region. 

“RSL NSW's members are committed to being wherever veterans and their families are, supporting them whenever they need it and delivering services however they can be best utilised on the ground, and we hope today serves as an example of how we can all work together to provide a similar model for other centres right across NSW.”

The Department of Veterans’ Affairs worked with local groups, including the NSW Office for Veterans’ Affairs, RSL and other ESOs to understand the services currently available and the ongoing needs of veterans and their families in the Nowra region.

RSL NSW led the development of the Nowra Veterans’ Wellbeing Centre and its project team looked at how the centre will operate and what services it will deliver. A detailed business case proposal was by developed by the project team, which included responses received through the recent Expression of Interest process.

All those involved are working together to deliver the centre as soon as possible for the benefit of veterans and their families. For more information about the Veterans’ Wellbeing Centres, visit the DVA websie.

ENDS

Media contacts

Minister Chester, Rachel Tharratt: 02 6277 7820
Senator Molan, Hayley Morris, 02 6284 3115
RSL LifeCare, Adam Connolly: 0417 170 084
RSL NSW, David Wolf: 0411 111 787
DVA Media: 02 6289 6466

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 1800 011 046 or +61 8 8241 4546) or visit www.OpenArms.gov.au