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Grants flow to support our RSL sub-branches and veterans

EASTERN Shore RSL sub-branches have received grants from the Tasmanian Government to assist them to find financial stability during the COVID-19 recovery.

Grants of up to $10,000 were available to eligible RSL sub-branches and ex-serving organisations, with grants of up to $25,000 also available to help RSLs and other organisations provide a new service or program to meet identified needs caused by impacts of COVID-19.

The South Arm RSL Sub-Branch received $5,957, while the Lindisfarne RSL Sub-Branch received $10,000.

South Arm RSL Sub-Branch president Mike Gallagher said the funds would be used to compensate the loss of revenue from fundraising activities that were suspended due to COVID-19.

“Because we’re all volunteers, we have very little expenses, and all the money we raise from fundraising goes to our veterans directly or via the memorial park,” he said.

“We’ve got a couple of projects being proposed at the moment, with one being a memorial to all the service personnel who have participated in the Middle East area of operation, and this money helps with that and to continue to build on what we have already provided.

“Another thing we have going on is the shed we constructed a couple of years ago, and we’re looking to have that powered, lined and turned into a museum.”

Member for Franklin Jacquie Petrusma said the grants will help support some of the most vulnerable members of the community.

“Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the club had not been able to hold events such as Anzac Day, raffles and functions that are their usual key fundraising opportunities,” she said.

“This has had a massive impact on the club and its ability to provide valuable assistance, support and advocacy for veterans and their families.”

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Guy Barnett said it was vital to help veterans and ex-serving organisations impacted by trading and fundraising restrictions to maintain viability during the current circumstances.

“Tasmania has more than 10,500 veterans and ex-serving personnel and organisations like the RSLs that provide invaluable support and advocacy for these veterans and their families,” he said.

“With many veterans and their families in vulnerable categories, the valuable assistance, support and advocacy provided by Tasmania’s RSLs and ex-serving organisations has never been more important.”

Caption: From left, South Arm RSL Sub-Branch president Mike Gallagher, Liberal Member for Franklin Jacquie Petrusma and South Arm RSL Sub-Branch treasurer Herman Westerhof.