ANVVWA CHAIRMAN'S REPORTS 2014

 

ANVVWA CHAIRMAN’S REPORT JUNE 2014

Since my last report, Carol and I have managed to get in some personal time overseas, which was becoming increasingly necessary as I was approaching what we refer to as “Burnout”.

All our volunteer welfare or pension officers who are constantly dealing with veterans develop some empathy with them, and can feel some of the problems they are suffering. Whilst this makes us more able to help them,
it makes us susceptible to this condition, which can cause problems for ourselves.

For this reason, TIP training courses have developed a program to allow us to recognise the symptoms and take action to avert causing problems in ourselves which would render us totally worthless to the people we need to assist.
This has happened to several of our former workers and advocates and we need to be aware of the stress they may be under.

Anyone who feels they are suffering from stress due to cases they are handling or are aware of others in that position – please call or e-mail me to discuss.

Mobile 0414 240 613 or e-mail wobblegong@iinet.net.au or our office e-mail anvvwa@iinet.net.au

During our time away, Carol and I visited Niagara Falls, travelled across Canada by train, aboard the Via-Rail “Canadian”, and after a bus tour in the western provinces, during which we encountered three days of falling snow,
bears, caribou, buffalo, all manner of chipmunks, squirrels, bald eagles etc then a cruise to Alaska.

All fantastic, except for the return flight from Ganzhou in China to Perth, where we managed to pick up about 12 days of ‘flu misery to follow!

All totally worth it!!!

Once again I wish to thank our dedicated team of office staff and trained welfare and pension officers, advocates and the many people who simply support us in so many ways.

Despite our small numbers, we are continuing to perform above expectations and most cases submitted are achieving at least partial success at the primary stage.
This means that fewer straight-forward cases need to go through the appeal stage.

Our BEST submission for this financial year has been accepted in full and as this is now our primary source of funding we can meet our forward planning objectives with confidence.

Donations still are very important to cover ongoing expenses which are not included in the BEST grant, such as the production and posting of this newsletter.

For this reason, we have decided that this will be the last newsletter automatically posted to all members. Only those not having an internet connection will receive the newsletter by post.

  To ensure that we can still send the newsletter to you, please send us a brief message by e-mail addressed to:

aanvvwa@iinet.net.au with subject line NEWSLETTER this will ensure we have your current address.

  Our webmaster Neil will also post each newsletter on the  website, which is still at:

wwww.ranveteranswelfare.asn.au

  Many regards to all

  Trevor Robbins

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ANVVWA CHAIRMAN’S REPORT MAY 2014

Greetings to all members of our Association.   

Apart from a change of Government, there seems to be an air of uncertainty surrounding all veterans and their families. I think we are all aware that although our country is not yet in a financial crisis, it would not take much to get it there, so we are all aware of the need to tighten our belts once again.  That being said, my reading of the information available from DVA following the Budget seems to provide an element of security for veterans. Most military pensions and financial assistance will continue relatively untouched. There have been significant cuts to the staff of DVA nationally which will result in the closure of some specific outreach programs and other states will be sharing the workload even more than at present.

VRB has closed the Registry in Perth. This simply means that the job currently held by Robyn Follington will be absorbed by the Queensland office. Robyn has submitted her retirement and I for one will miss her. We will continue to have Review Boards held at the AAT building in Perth as at present, but the administration will be from Queensland. One of the reasons for this is budgetary, as the number of claims needing to be reviewed has reduced considerably, partly by primary success, and also by using the Section 31 review process, which is particularly useful.

I have spoken to the Registrar in Queensland and will be submitting several cases for hearing 14th to 18th July.

I believe that we have been very successful at primary claim level, with at least part of all basic claims being accepted on the initial submission. (Although there have been some problems, particularly due to clients failing to submit the entire documentation and PoI after getting their GP to endorse the submission. I know staples are a pain, but they do hold stuff together!)

I have had a few medical problems recently due to something called Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo, which cannot be attributed to any particular cause, or have a specific cure, but causes me to get giddy and fall over, without even having a drink!  Hopefully this will not cause too many problems in my advocacy work.

Anzac Day – Although I was in the unfortunate position of witnessing a traffic bingle en-route, managed to arrive with the banner before we stepped off!  Really good roll up of members and friends, and we were also fortunate enough to have a “haggis” band close to us to maintain our step without too many problems. Quite a moving ceremony following the march, complete with very fast fly-over by the RAAF.  Good to see Les and Betty Hodgson and lots of our friends at the Swan Yacht Club for drinks and the buffet lunch.

Under my other hat of State Training Manager, TIP Training is continuing on track and courses for June are: Wed/Thu 4 – 5th June – Statement of Principles, Wed/Thu 25 – 26th June – Case Officer Level 2.   Please contact Carole or myself to nominate for any courses.

Information about TIP courses and direct links to anything are available in the DVA website (just type DVA in the search bar), then when on the site, use the options along the top to select “ex-service organisations” for another drop down menu, then select TIP, and the state. Alma Riley our TIP Administrative assistant, is also available on 0447 837 494 or on e-mail at  tipwa@outlook.com

Once again, thanks to all our volunteers. 

Regards,

Trevor

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ANVVWA CHAIRMAN’S REPORT FEBRUARY 2014

Greetings to all members of our Association.   

We certainly had a few problems during the last quarter of 2013 which, fortunately have improved, at least for some.

Betty Hodgson is now well and appears to be in good shape following the stroke suffered last year. Les and Betty were present as usual at the last meeting to make sure they got at least some of the Christmas cake and Subway.

I had mistakenly reported that Aussie’s daughter was ill, fortunately this was not the case. His sister in SA is however terminally ill and we wish her and her whole family comfort and support in the coming period. I understand that Aussie will not be home this year until at least early in May.

Barry Matthews is once again having a few problems with bits and pieces which are still attached but not working as well as they should, so has spent a bit more time than he would like in hospital. Carole is still not legally able to drive due to doctors being a bit slow to give her a clean bill of health. She hopes to be able to legally give the new car a spin, when it finally gets all the mods attached.

Our Constitution has now been declared invalid at our November meeting and we have started to go through the tedious legal process of re-writing it to properly reflect the responsibilities of our volunteers, particularly in view of the primary funding of the BEST Grant under which we now operate and rely on. As previously mentioned, the Association has to ensure all who work under its banner are appropriately trained and indemnified to meet the Nationally approved standards of the DVA and the various Acts under which veterans can receive pensions, assistance, compensation and rehabilitation. The new Constitution will need to be greatly simplified to merely describe the aims and objectives of our current Association and the appropriate legal minimums of every association. If any person has experience in this field and would like to assist in the matter, please contact any of our committee.

Under my other hat of State Training Manager, TIP Training has been unfortunately unable to meet its obligations for the first part of this year, due to the resignation of Kim Lynch, who was our valuable part time co-ordinator at DVA. She resigned before Christmas to accept a better paid position which would enable more time with her young family, and went with our blessing. She has now been replaced by Alma Riley, who is also ex-army and whose husband is a senior serving Army Officer. I am sure our program will resume very shortly and we will be looking for volunteers to attend the training courses.

Information about TIP courses and direct links to anything are available in the DVA website (just type DVA in the search bar), then when on the site, use the options along the top to select “ex-service organisations” for another drop down menu, then select TIP, and the state. Alma Riley our TIP Administrative assistant, is also available on 0447 837 494 or on e-mail at  tipwa@outlook.com

Once again, thanks to all our volunteers, I look forward to another good year. 

Regards,  Trevor

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