There are many issues that have the wider defence community considering how they might vote in the coming federal election.
High on the list is military superannuation, particularly those who were compulsorily subscribed to what ultimately became the Defence Force Retirement and Death Benefits Scheme (DFRDB).

Disgruntled veterans are not stupid, so by comparing multiple responses know their grievances are not being reasonably considered, despite carefully crafted submissions based on new compelling evidence.
They may not riot, but have pencils and will vote.


2019 Australia to USA Veteran Scholarship Opportunities

My name is Katie and I am the Education and Communications Manager at the American Australian Association (AAA). Part of my role is to facilitate and promote AAA scholarship opportunities that support young Australians and Americans wishing to pursue study in each other’s country. 

I would like to share that the AAA is currently accepting applications for Round 1 (Australia to USA) of the American-Australian Veterans’ Fund. This scholarship round will support honorably discharged Australian veterans, undertaking or interested in undertaking, Undergraduate or Graduate level study in the United States for a minimum of one-year in any disciplinary field. Scholarships awarded will be up to a maximum of US$50,000 which may be used to support travel, living, tuition or other associated costs. The closing deadline for Round 1 – Australia to USA is March 17, 2019.

Attached is a letter from AAA Chief Operating Officer, Debbie Chappel, along with the announcement that outlines each scholarship opportunity for Australian veterans.

I welcome you to please circulate and share this information with your network at Royal Australian Regiment Association ​

and encourage anyone who may be eligible to apply.

I am happy to answer any questions you may have via email or video conference call.

Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Kind regards,

Katie Rotherham

Education and Communications Manager

American Australian Association
50 Broadway, Suite 2003, New York NY 10004
T: +1 (212) 338-6860 x 208
M: +1 (908) 672-4818

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Health News – When a thirst might be dangerous

In the heat of summer, it can take as little as 30 minutes to become dehydrated. But it’s not just the heat that can dry you out.

Air-conditioning or even just sitting in front of a fan for extended periods can do the job of dehydrating you just as quickly.

Dehydration can be subtle, but it can turn into a serious health concern. While there are many opinions on how much water you need to drink on average each day to stay properly hydrated, different hydration requirements among people will vary. However, making sure you drink at least a few glasses of water each day should help to stave off the effects of dehydration.

From minor symptoms such as having trouble concentrating, thirst and a dry mouth, to more serious concerns such as nausea, headaches, heat stroke and fever, dehydration affects people in different ways. Dehydration can become so bad that you can land in hospital.

So, how can you tell if you’re dehydrated? Here are nine signs to look out for:

  1. Increased thirst and a dry sticky mouth
  2. Tiredness, confusion and anger
  3. Dry eyes and blurred vision
  4.  Headaches, dizziness and disorientation
  5. Cramping
  6. Not sweating
  7.  Dark-coloured urine
  8. Fever
  9. Dry skin


Plain water is good for you, but experts recommend a combination of water, electrolytes and sodium to stay properly hydrated.

If you’re in the sun for too long, or exercise a little too strenuously, it’s important to know that you can still overheat, no matter how much water you drink.

Scamwatch Radar Alert – Warning about ’emergency’ text messages

Scamwatch is warning members of the public about a spate of text messages asking for emergency assistance. These messages are coming from phone numbers not in your mobile contacts. For example, the text message might read, ‘Please call me back right away. It is an Emergency I need your help!’

People who have called the number back report being verbally abused by a recording on the other end. This is a new and emerging issue. While people have not yet reported losing money as a result of these calls, you may find the content of the recording distressing. Scamwatch therefore advises that you exercise caution or do not respond to these text messages.


This is the front page of the Courier Mail in Queensland on Saturday 9th February.  

Makes you feel very proud of the team. This is “second to none” in any language. Well done!

Gordon Hurford
2 RAR Association

Check your Mates

During times of crisis, it becomes even more important to #CheckYourMates. If you or anyone you know is having a hard time during the Townsville flooding there are resources you can call for help.

In an emergency, call 000
Or outside of an emergency, you can contact these 24-hour services. 
NQ Connect 1300 059 625
Open Arms – Veterans & Families Counselling1800 011 046
Lifeline 13 11 14
Kids Helpline Official 1800 55 1800


You are invited to a luncheon at the QLD Cricketers Club, East Brisbane, with guest speakers The Hon Dr Brendan Nelson, Director – Australian War Memorial and Darren Lehmann, past Australian test cricketer and Coach.

Event to be held on Friday, 15 March 2019 from 12:00 pm to 3:30 pm (AEST) Queensland Cricketers’ Club
411 Vulture Street
East Brisbane, QLD 4169

It is a 2 course luncheon with beverages included. We will also be holding a monster raffle and auction.

All funds raised go towards the building of the Afghanistan War Memorial Garden in Brisbane. This will honour the 41 Fallen Veterans killed in action, the 42nd representing those that have lost the battle back home and all those that are still fighting the battle. The memorial will also tell the full story of the longest conflict Australian troops have ever fought in.

Please share this event on Facebook and Twitter. We hope you can join us.


Afghanistan War Memorial Garden 42 FOR 42.·MONDAY, 28 JANUARY 2019 42for42 is a not-for-profit organisation which was founded by ex-Army veterans whose aim is to help struggling veterans and their families by building a memorial dedicated to those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice. The 42 stands for the 41 soldiers who were killed in Afghanistan, with the 42nd representing the soldiers we have lost and continue to lose to suicide, and those who have returned with injuries and mental illness. It is our vision and mission to build a Memorial Garden in the grounds of Suncorp Stadium beside the Anglican Church of Australia. This is a wonderful opportunity to show your pride, respect and honour to those that have fallen and walk tall beside their families and brothers-in-arms.

Share this event on Facebook and Twitter.We hope you can join us, Lest We Forget

Support for people affected by the Townsville and NQ Floods

For all people suffering from the floods. Here are the current grants available and how to get them.

Emergency hardship assistance: $180, not asset tested

Essential household contents grant: Grants of up to $1,765 for single adults who are uninsured to replace or repair essential household contents

Structural assistance grant: Grants of up to $10,995 for single adults and up to $14,685 for couples/families are available if you are uninsured and need repairs to your home

Access to these grants is available at: https://www.communityrecovery.qld.gov.au/#/       1800 173 349

Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment and Disaster Recovery: a one-off recovery assistance payment of $1000 per eligible adult and $400 per eligible child. More than 25 percent of your home needs to have major damage or have been breached by flood waters

Go to:
180 22 66

Disaster Recovery Allowance: Help for people who can show loss of income as a direct result of the Far North Queensland Floods

Go here for more: https://www.humanservices.gov.au/…/far-north-queensland-flo…

Essential services safety and reconnection grant: If you’re uninsured, or unable to claim insurance, you may be eligible for a grant to help you reconnect essential services:
– $200 towards a safety inspection for each essential service needing reconnection
– Up to $4200 towards repair work to enable essential services to be reconnected

For details of eligibilty and how to apply go here


Opinion – Losses borne in bravery’s spirit

COMMUNITIES have multiple identities and several layers.
There are those born there, often identifying through several local generations. Then there are transients, those who float through a community, not always being accepted as being part of a community’s fabric.
In the last week this disparate Townsville community has been united by a common challenge, what some are claiming as the worst natural disaster ever to visit itself upon the city.

There is only one individual who claims to be part of the community who is not sharing the pain


An opportunity for personal stories…

Your contacts in the Vietnam veteran community have an opportunity to record their personal stories for the future.

Can I ask you to put the question and encourage stories to be told.

The Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia is working towards the production of a record of our history

We need your stories! A book on the war is in the works, thanks to a top Australian publisher.

And we need your stories, yarns, reflections, anecdotes and more to make it be the book we aim for. This book will tell the history of the war under the working title of “Our Vietnam, Heroes, The People, The Stories & the facts”

Any stories funny or wry, sad or sombre, offering insights, untold tales and thoughts that reflect what the 50,000 Aussies who went to Vietnam went through.

Many histories are told through the memories of top brass and we want a dinkum account that as near as possible captures the spirit of Vietnam Diggers as the war retreats from the memory of some people, but remains alive to so many others. We want to preserve those memories forever in the best way possible.

Send your stories to the Editor V.V.A.A. Debrief, at [email protected] aim for up to 1000 words, and they will be forwarded to the publisher.


Ken Foster OAM JP

Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia

National President