RSA thanks Minister Ron Mark for increasing support for Veterans
RSA National President BJ Clark thanks Minister of Defence and Minister for Veterans Hon Ron
Mark, for carrying through with the commitment of support he made during a speech at the
RSA’s 101st National Council, in Wellington last month.
“On behalf of the RSA and the veteran community, we sincerely thank the Minister. He said he
would do it, and he has,” Mr Clark said.
The Minister has provided a grant of $250,000 to the Royal New Zealand Returned and Services’
Association, an increase of $75,000 on last year’s amount.
“This funding will go a long way towards improving life for current and former service people in
New Zealand, and their access to help and services if, and when, they need them.
“This will mean we can provide more and better services to look after those who have served
and their families.”
Changing offering to meet demand of today's Service personnel
To cope with changing demand, the RSA has significantly broadened its support offering in the last two years.
While still looking after older veterans of World War 2, the Korean War, and Vietnam War, the
RSA has increasingly been working on developing better support for an estimated 31,000
veterans of the 42 NZDF operational deployments since 1974.
The three key areas the RSA is focussing on are psychological wounding and recovery, exposure
to toxins during service, and transitioning from military to civilian careers, Mr Clark said.
“We’re here to help all those who have served, and their families. There is a lot of work to do,
and this grant will help us do it.
“Those who are serving now – and especially those returning from operational deployments –
are facing situations and stresses unlike any we’ve encountered before.
“The RSA, and other groups like No Duff and Veterans’ Affairs, are having to develop new ways
to make sure our people are being looked after. The Minister clearly recognises and supports
the work that is needed in this area and we are very grateful for his support.”