14 March 2024

Veterans’ and Families’ hub to be established in Ipswich

| Andrew McLaughlin
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Veterans’ and Families’ Hub in Ipswich

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel Matt Keogh (centre), Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann (centre-right), and current and former ADF members at the Ipswich hub announcement. Photo: Matt Keogh Facebook.

The Federal Government has announced that RSL Queensland, along with Mates4Mates and GO2 Health, will be given $5.445 million to establish a Veterans’ and Families’ Hub in Ipswich.

The grant, which was provided after a competitive application and business case process, will improve specialist services for more than 10,000 veterans and their families in Ipswich and its surrounding areas.

RSL Queensland and Mates4Mates have experience in developing and managing Veterans’ and Families’ Hubs, and their offerings will now be further expanded with the support of GO2 Health.

The Ipswich Hub will provide services, including a dedicated focus on medical interventions through GO2 Health, physical and mental health rehabilitation services supported by Mates4Mates, and social and emotional well-being supports facilitated by RSL Queensland.

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The Veterans’ and Families’ Hub will initially provide support through the Mates4Mates site in Ipswich and other existing RSL Queensland service facilities before moving to a permanent site once established. Outreach services are already being provided and will be expanded across the Ipswich region and out to Toowoomba.

The grant is part of the Federal Government’s $46.7 million commitment to deliver 10 Veterans’ and Families’ Hubs across the country.

The government’s commitment builds upon the previous Coalition government’s pledge to establish hubs in Perth, Townsville, Adelaide, Wodonga, Nowra and Darwin in partnership with ex-service organisations and state and territory governments.

In October 2022, an additional commitment was made to add hubs in the NSW Hawkesbury, Hunter and Tweed/North Coast regions; in Queanbeyan; in Northern Adelaide in South Australia; in Southwest Perth in Western Australia; in Victoria’s Surf Coast and Geelong region, and in Ipswich.

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel Matt Keogh said RSL Queensland and Mates4Mates already have a proven track record supporting veterans and families across the country.

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“With the additional insights from GO2 Health, I can’t wait to see what they achieve for the veteran community in Ipswich,” he said.

“Each veteran community around the country is different, so it’s essential we develop hubs that provide targeted support, not a cookie-cutter approach.

“The consultation undertaken with the local community in the development of the business case gives me confidence they’ll be able to deliver a Hub that fits the needs of the local community.”

Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann said he was proud the government is delivering on his commitment to establish the Ipswich Veterans’ and Families’ Hub.

“This is great news for our local ex-service community in Ipswich and surrounding areas, and this much-needed service will make it easier for people to access the practical support they need close to home and help with their transition to civilian life,” he said.

“I advocated strongly for a Hub in Ipswich because we’re a garrison town that’s home to the biggest Air Force base in Australia in RAAF Base Amberley, and our region has one of the largest defence and veteran populations in the country.”

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