Shared Mission, Shared Future

As we roll out our second edition of OTR, it is timely that I introduce members to my theme for RSL NSW for 2016 – “Shared Mission, Shared Future”. This theme reflects our renewed focus on executing the mission of the League in NSW, the statement of which is clear and unambiguous. Indeed, the need for us all to focus our efforts on funding and sustaining the work we collectively do in the homeless veterans, PTSD and broader care and well-being, and pension advocacy/compensation spaces is reflected in the first limb of our mission statement: 

“To provide for the well-being, care, compensation and commemoration of serving and ex-serving Defence Force personnel and their dependants.” 

A day does not go by on which an issue impacting the well-being of veterans and their families, particularly the so-called “4th generation veterans”, does not arise in the media or in ex-Service circles. Tragically, this also includes the suicide of younger veterans many of whom are suffering under the burden of PTSD and other mental health afflictions. 

The theme “Shared Mission, Shared Future” emphasises the fact that the execution of our mission is the responsibility of all members of the League and, similarly, we all share the responsibility to ensure our organisation is sustainable into the future. The upshot is that we all have a duty to ensure the League can continue to provide care, well-being and compensation services to serving and ex-serving Defence members and their families, regardless of geographical location in the State, in the future. This duty will require us to make hard decisions on hard issues such as the manner in which we finance these core activities or otherwise staff the tasks required to undertake these activities. 

In an ideal world, each generation wants to leave a better world for the next. We, the members of RSL NSW, have an opportunity to do just that with regard to the latest generation of veterans and ex-Service people and subsequent generations. The strategic planning presently being conducted by RSL NSW staff and board members, in consultation with RSL member stakeholders, encapsulates this theme of “Shared Mission, Shared Future” and is expected to provide the guidance needed to allow us to leave a legacy of sustainable care, well-being and compensation support to those who have served and will serve after us.