RSL NSW sponsors Integra Service Dogs for Veterans through the Veteran Support Fund

Two Integra Service Dogs are now searching for their forever homes with veterans, thanks to the RSL NSW Veteran Support Fund.

At a glance: 

  • Integra Service Dogs Australia is one of the first charities to benefit from the Veteran Support Fund, which has raised $6 million to fund initiatives that support veterans and their families. 
  • RSL NSW sub-Branches raised a combined $86,000 for Integra Service Dogs to help fund the care, training and travel-related expenses for two assistance dogs. 
  • If you know a veteran who could benefit from an assistance dog, and meets the criteria for consideration, they are encouraged to apply! 

Thanks to generous donations of $86,000 from RSL sub-Branches via the Veteran Support Fund (VSF), RSL NSW is proud to sponsor Integra Service Dogs Australia to fund the care, training, and travel-related expenses of two assistance dogs to support veterans in NSW. 

The Integra Labradors are highly trained to support veterans in rebuilding trust and relationships, and connecting with family, friends and their community. The Integra Service Dogs Australia program teaches dogs to become emotionally attuned to their handler’s unique triggers, so they can ground them from a hyper-aroused state and provide support through the daily trauma and stresses of life. 

Nominated by Maroubra RSL sub-Branch, Integra Service Dogs Australia is one of the first charities to benefit from the VSF. The RSL NSW Veteran Support Fund was established in 2023 to align financial support provided by RSL NSW with our charitable purpose: to support veterans and their families. In its first year, the VSF has raised more than $6 million.  

Do you know a veteran who could benefit from an assistance dog?

Integra will consider applications for support through the Assistance Dog Program from: 

  • Currently serving Australian Defence Force (ADF) members who have a recognised ‘injury’ or ‘condition’ and have the support from their Commanding Officer (CO) to have an assistance dog on base with them as part of their ongoing work in the ADF, or, 
  • ADF veterans who hold either a DVA White Card (Specific Conditions) or a Gold Card (Totally & Permanently Incapacitated – TPI). 

Eligible veterans must also have: 

  • A suitable home environment in which to house and care for an assistance dog,  
  • The physical ability to safely manage an assistance dog (or a support person who can assist),  
  • The willingness to participate in Integra’s confidential assessment process and training program, and, 
  • The ability to financially contribute to the ongoing care of an assistance dog.

If you know a veteran who could benefit from an assistance dog, and meets the criteria for consideration, they are encouraged to complete an application and submit it to enquiries@isda.com.au for review. 

Please note: Following approval, it generally takes 6 months for a veteran to be matched with a suitable partner and led through the process of training and caring for their assistance dog. 

With your continued support, the VSF continues to make a significant impact, providing vital services and support to veterans and their families. Learn more about the RSL NSW Veteran Support Fund here. 

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