On 26 October 2018, Veteran Sport Australia (VSA) was announced as a key legacy of the Invictus Games Sydney 2018; a nationwide program supporting the health and wellbeing of veterans and their families through sport. The Invictus Games shone a spotlight on the power of sport and brought organisations and communities together in support. The challenge remains to harness this goodwill and support to make a meaningful difference.
The Veterans Sport Australia website is live. This is currently the best means to engage with VSA. The website allows veterans to register an interest in future news about the program, submit enquiries and requests for support, and provides information about opportunities that exist. The website will be updated with further information in the new year and continue to develop.
For anyone interested in receiving more information or seeking support, please visit the website - www.veteransport.org.au
We will also be sharing information via the newly created Veteran Sport Australia Facebook page - http://www.facebook.com/VeteranSportAustralia/
If you don't have access to internet services, please call us on (02) 9264 8188.
At the start of December, Michael Hartung commenced as the General Manager of VSA (formerly Chief Delivery Officer with the Invictus Games and previously over 10 years with the Australian Paralympic Committee). He joins Anne Rutlidge, VSA Support Coordinator, with further plans to grow the team in the new year.
Starting in 2019, VSA will be focused on engaging widely with the veteran community, collaborating with organisations who deliver programs to veterans and working with likeminded organisations to grow the reach and impact of the program.
Engagement with veterans and their families will continue to be through the website and phone service. However, the aim is to engage directly at a community level, by having people on the ground. The benefit of this approach is the ability to support individual circumstances and work towards finding a solution.
There are lots of organisations and associations already delivering great programs right across the country from ex-service organisations, to sport and community sectors. We will work collaboratively with these organisations to understand their reach and support continued growth and awareness of their activities. In 2019, we will be meeting with many of these organisations to align our goals.
In support of veterans and these service-providing organisations we will be delivering a modest financial assistance program. This will help remove barriers that currently exist for veterans and their families to pursue opportunities in sport and recreation.
Competition and teams are another aspect we will be looking to support. Whether this be in partnership with ADF Sport, such as the Invictus team, or for other events.
Opportunities don't always have to be about a competitor. We are currently looking at exciting opportunities in officiating, coaching, administration and volunteering. As these are developed, we will communicate them to those who have signed up to receive information via our website. If you haven't already, please register at http://www.veteransport.org.au/signup/
In 2019, VSA will be meeting with organisations, including potential sponsors, to determine how they can help make VSA a success. If your organisation would like to contribute, please get in touch.
We look forward to bringing you further news on the program in the new year.
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