Our History | Veterans Centre Sydney Northern Beaches
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Our history

Our History

The Veteran Centre Sydney Northern Beaches is in its third year of operation, and is located at Dee Why RSL Club, in the heart of the Northern Beaches.

The Centre is accessible to all Veterans in the region, with the intention of providing a holistic approach to care and assistance for anyone with military connections, be it a Veteran, their spouses, family, relatives and friends.

The centre is a non-aligned, independent service designed to provide meaningful assistance and positive outcomes for the veteran community.

From all of us at the Veteran Centre – Sydney Northern Beaches, we look forward to welcoming you into our community.

In 2016 we also became heavily involved with currently serving ADF personnel, working on early intervention and preventative strategies to reduce the number of people reaching crisis in the years to come.
In its seventh year of successful operation, the Veterans Centre Sydney Beaches (VCSNB) continues to be a leader in veteran services. Sponsored by and operating from within Dee Why RSL Club, the VCSNB provides access and opportunity for those in our community to come together, support one another and build a robust, positive and progressive community.
The Board consists of an independent Chair and six honorary community members and professionals, who are collectively responsible for the judicious governance of the VCSNB and share a passion for providing support services to our veterans and their families.

The Veterans Centre Sydney Northern Beaches was established in 2011, with a recognition that support services for Veterans and their families on the Northern Beaches was disorganised and inefficient. The Hon. Bronwyn Bishop became Founding Patron.

In 2012, with DVA funding and the cooperation of multiple ESO’s, the non-aligned Veterans Centre Sydney Northern Beaches was located at the War Veterans Village Narrabeen with assistance from RSL LifeCare. For the first time ex-service organisations across the Northern Beaches were networked and began to provide a collaborative support service. Volunteers provide advocacy support took part in professional development training ensuring quality service provision.

In 2015, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed and executed with Dee Why RSL Club to enhance the centres services offerings and resources including, a full time Centre Manager and new fully-furnished, premises on Level 4 of Dee Why RSL Club for the exclusive us of Veterans and their families. Currently, the centre is expanding its services and range of assistance for those in need. In October, the VCSNB held its official opening at Dee Why RSL Club.

In 2016, VCSNB staff began operating on military bases in the greater Sydney region. This was a first important step in beginning early intervention work to prevent crisis in the former service community. The VCSNB also hosted the first collaborative forum focused on the needs of the former service community. Over 80 organisations were represented.

In 2017, the VCSNB employed their first full-time advocate. Held the Inaugural Resilience Lunch, which resulted in much needed funds raised, major sponsorship from Campsie RSL Club and Vice-Regal Patronage from His Excellency General The Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (ret'd). Mr Michael Griffin AM, Integrity Commissioner for Law Enforcement, took over from Mr John McInerney OAM as Chair of the VCSNB.

In 2018, the VCSNB participated in several government reports investigating supporting services to current and former military service personnel and their families. The VCSNB restructured it's service delivery into a unique service delivery model for the former service community. This model has led to a 32% increase in assistance provided to 168 clients.