RSL Poppy Appeal and Remembrance Day 2016
Monday 31 October, 2016
November is a significant month for the RSL and includes the Poppy Appeal and Remembrance Day.
The Poppy Appeal commences on Tuesday November 1 with a launch at the Field of Remembrance on North Terrace. The Field of Remembrance features thousands of crosses planted in the lawns adjacent to Government House. The crosses are planted by Veteran Associations and schools.
The Poppy Appeal Field of Remembrance on North Terrace, Adelaide.
The field has been expanded this year welcoming 1000 hand-made poppies from budding young artists. Little Picassos Art School offers specialised art classes for young children at three locations (Glenelg, Hyde Park, Woodcroft). Approximately 300 students have contributed 1000 poppies for the Field of Remembrance as a significant back drop to the wooden crosses.
The Poppy Appeal raises funds for the RSL to deliver services for Veterans and their families. This year’s appeal is dedicated to remembering and supporting veterans of all ages. In line with that mood, the appeal will provide financial support for four programs:
- Homes for Heroes – emergency housing for homeless veterans.
- RSL Active – supporting former members of the Armed Services in their transition from military to civilian life.
- Operation K9 – assistance dogs for veterans experiencing stress-related conditions.
- The RSL Virtual War Memorial – over 600,000 profiles of men and women who served.
Poppies are available for sale from RSL Sub-Branches across South Australia, Northern Territory and Broken Hill. National partnerships with Woolworths, Bunnings and Officeworks will see them selling poppies on behalf of the RSL, assisting them in their fundraising efforts.
In Adelaide staff from the Australian Defence Force will donate their time to sell poppies. The ADF staff and RSL volunteers will be selling poppies at the following locations:
- The Field of Remembrance, North Terrace, from Nov 1 – 11
- SAJC Race Day at Morphettville on November 5
- Rundle Mall and city streets on November 9
- Rundle Mall and city streets on November 11
- Adelaide United v Brisbane Roar at Coopers Stadium, Friday November 11
We will also have poppies available at the Remembrance Day service in the city. The traditional service will be held at the SA National War Memorial from 10.45am with state dignitaries in attendance. This service is open to the general community and will conclude by 11.30am.
In 2016 will also see buglers on city streets to play The Last Post at 11am followed by one minute of silence. The locations for this are:
- 30 Pirie Street (outside Telstra House)
- Victoria Square (opposite SA Water)
- 400 King William Street (outside Credit Union SA)
- 111 Hutt Street (the front garden of the Naval Military and Air Force Club).
The Last Post will encourage city workers to leave their desks, pause for a minute and buy a poppy.
On Wednesday November 9 will see a new addition to the Poppy Appeal.
A platoon of ‘ghost soldiers’ – dressed in the military uniforms of past conflicts – will parade throughout Adelaide. Each ghost will carry a card bearing the name and service details of a South Australian casualty of war. The idea is to build community awareness, and develop a mood of widespread reflection, in the lead-up to Remembrance Day. The ghosts will meet for a group photo at the SA National War Memorial at 10am on November 9.
The ‘ghost soldiers’ platoon has been recruited by the RSL and includes members of service organisations and military re-enactment groups. Adelaide’s ‘ghost platoon’ has been inspired by a similar initiative in the UK this year, in which groups wearing World War 1 uniform assembled at train stations and shopping centres to mark the Battle of the Somme centenary. Their appearances everywhere left an indelible impression on public consciousness, notably through mainstream media and internet exposure.
ASC – Australia’s submarine maintainer and shipbuilder – are the RSL’s Poppy Appeal Partner in 2016. The RSL is also working with the City of Adelaide who support the Remembrance Day Service and collections in city streets.
If you have a family member who served in the military you may be interested in adding their profile to the RSL Virtual War Memorial.