The RSL and its volunteers provide assistance to past and present service personnel when in need with a range of financial and non-financial support services. You do not have to be a member of the RSL to receive assistance; you only have to be a current or former member of the Australian Defence Force, our Allies, or a dependent of either group. The money raised through the Appeals enables the RSL to financially assist members by reducing the burden of expenses such as:
• Grocery shopping
• Outstanding household bills
• Medical and hospital expenses
• The cost of mobility aids such as wheelchairs, scooters and walking frames
• Household repairs and maintenance
• Funeral costs
In addition, volunteers offer non-financial support to members in the form of home and hospital visits providing both physical and emotional care, support and assistance.
“Thank you for the two Coles gift vouchers you kindly sent me. They were most appreciated and were a great help”
“Many thanks to RSL for your support with my medical and hospital expenses”
“Just to say a warm ‘thank you’ for all your kindness, support and care”
How we can help
A former member of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), who served in most of the current operational war zones was diagnosed with a mental health condition attributable to an incident that occurred during his service. The member was subsequently discharged from the RAN on medical grounds and is now sadly struggling to manage everyday living expenses. The RSL has been able to provide financial assistance to the veteran to help pay for outstanding household bills.
Home is where the heart is
An elderly widow of a former member of the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) who served in World War II is living in a caravan in country Victoria. The caravan, being quite old, was missing some interior lining resulting in it being very cold in winter and extremely hot in summer. The RSL provided funding for a tradesperson to supply and fit new interior lining in the caravan, repair a leaking shower base and install a small reverse cycle air-conditioner to provide the elderly widow with some relief.
In a new light
A former member of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) needed to replace his broken spectacles and was given a quote of around $300. Due to a medical condition unrelated to his RAN service, he is unable to work and survives on a disability support pension. He did not have the necessary savings to replace his spectacles and sadly had to make do by patching them. The RSL paid for replacement spectacles.
Rest in peace
The cemetery of a World War I digger and former member of the 20th Victorian Mounted Rifles Australian Light Horse (Militia) was desecrated by thieves in Melbourne’s southeast. The daughter of the veteran was devastated to find the grave of her father had been stripped of its brass lettering and rising sun badge. The RSL paid to supply and install a cast bronze plaque on the veteran’s grave.
Family in Need
A former member of the Australian Army was discharged on medical grounds and is no longer able to work. He and his wife have four school-aged children, one of whom has recently been diagnosed with cardiomyopathy, a debilitating condition which requires the use of a motorised wheelchair. Financially struggling to bring up four children, the family were unable to pay for the much needed motorised wheelchair for their disabled child. The RSL, bought the motorised wheelchair for the family.
We still call Australia home
An elderly Australian World War II veteran was married to a lady from the United States and had lived there for many years. Unfortunately his wife became very ill and in order to fund her ongoing medical treatment the veteran was forced to re-mortgage the family home. Sadly she passed away and the Australian veteran was left in the United States with no family support and the financial struggle of repaying the outstanding mortgage. Suffering from long term diabetes, the 87 year old veteran requires full time care to help with day-to-day activities after recently having his leg amputated. His only living relative is located in Melbourne, however she was not able to afford his flight home. The RSL paid for a one way ticket from the United States to Australia to bring the veteran back home.
Winning back some independence
A former member of the British Merchant Navy suffered a stroke and lost some of his mobility. Unfortunately, despite being an Australian citizen, he is not entitled to support through the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) because of his foreign-service status. Consequently, his request for an electric scooter to aid his mobility was dismissed. The RSL provided him with a motorised electric scooter on permanent loan.
Staying by each others side
A current serving member of the Australian Army was recently injured in Afghanistan by an Improvised Explosive Device. He was returned to Australia to commence long-term medical rehabilitation for his injuries, however unfortunately his current rehabilitation location is a significant distance away from his partner. The Department of Defence has established a welfare plan which involves flying his partner every 6 to 8 weeks and providing her with one week’s accommodation at that time close by his side. The RSL has assisted by funding additional flights and accommodation in between the 6 to 8 week blocks to maximise the limited amount of time the young couple are able to spend together.