The service and sacrifices of veterans and their transition from military to civilian life are in focus with the NSW Government launching the State’s first whole-of-government strategy, developed using insights and expertise from ex-serving personnel and their families.
Minister for Veterans Geoff Lee said the NSW Government Veterans Strategy aims to improve existing support services and identify new initiatives.
“We worked with the veteran community to develop programs that reflect their interests, eliminate barriers and support a fulfilling life post-service,” Mr Lee said.
“NSW is home to more than 200,000 former Australian Defence Force personnel; a diverse group of men and women who served our country.
“Their experiences are at the core of this flagship strategy, thanks to the valuable input provided by the veteran community and their families.”
In addition to focus groups, more than 2,000 individual veterans, reservists, family members and supporters gave their input via an online survey.
By harnessing a whole-of-government approach, four key areas were identified to help achieve veteran wellbeing: recognition and commemoration, education and employment, community and volunteering, and support.
Parliamentary Secretary for Veterans James Griffin said the Strategy will help veterans to continue developing their skills and participate fully in society.
“The Strategy will guide education and employment outcomes, create social connections, and target services in health, wellbeing and housing,” Mr Griffin said.
The landmark strategy – endorsed by RSL NSW, Legacy NSW and the Australian War Widows NSW – includes initiatives such as the Premier’s Anzac Memorial Scholarship, the National Centre for Veterans’ Healthcare and funding for Veteran Sports Australia.