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Hubdate October 2019

When the stress of daily life gets on top of you it’s time for a break and that’s just what the Hub can provide for Veterans and their families affected by the impact of PTS and other service related injuries. One of our key contacts is a respite program known as Robe to Recovery that, as its name suggests, is located in Robe in the state’s South East.

Robe to Recovery is the brain child of local resident and business woman Jacqui Bateman, who came up with the concept in 2015 whilst attempting to locate a suitable veteran charity to donate to. Her view was that she could donate $50.00 from her own pocket any time but she wanted to do something more, something tangible and in direct support of our veterans. At the time she had been attempting to contact Soldier On and a chance meeting with the State Manager at a local event gave her the opportunity to present her idea. Jacqui owns a B&B in Robe and figured that if she could offer it to a veteran and their family at least once a year for free it might just provide a chance for the family to spend some quality time together without the financial stress.

They agreed that the idea was sound and Jacqui took the concept to the Robe Tourism Association (RTA), of which she is a member, to see if she could gain some additional support. Without hesitation the RTA members got on board and before long Jacqui had not only a number of other accommodation providers, but also local businesses wishing to donate goods and services to the visiting veterans.

And so it began, one by one there became a steady stream of veterans and families heading to Robe for a quiet relaxing weekend together and the impact was immediate and positive. Veterans tell of the emotional experience reading personal letters and cards from members of the community thanking them for their service.  The quality moments with their families, as they enjoyed the hospitality of the community and its surrounds, was the break from everyday life that was needed.

The ABC put together a segment on their “Backroads” program in January 2018 that focussed on the Robe community.  The program also highlighted the Robe to Recovery program and how the community had embraced our veterans in a show of incredible generosity and support. Since then 3 other communities have taken up the program and veterans in both South Australia and Victoria are able to access respite stays in Robe and Port Lincoln in SA and also Cobden and Phillip Island in Victoria.

To date, the respite programs and their supporting businesses have collectively hosted over 30 veterans and their families providing more than 120 nights of accommodation and goods and services exceeding $20,000.

The Hub is incredibly proud to be connected with this wonderful program and the communities who host our veterans and their families at a time when their world can seem incredibly difficult and stressful. If you would like to know more, check out the Robe to Recovery website or Facebook page or email me here at the Hub and I can put you in touch with the respective respite coordinators in each location.

If you would like to access this program or any of the support services available at the Hub or just need contact details for other supporting organisations make sure you contact me on 0418 264 886 or email me at Justin.Brown2@sa.gov.au .

 

Justin Brown

Partnerships Hub Coordinator


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