Marathon effort to raise funds for injured veterans

A former Navy submariner will run 57km around the Sydney Harbour on Monday, 10 October, to raise vital funds for ADF veterans injured during service.

Military charity Bravery Trust has launched a 57km challenge for the month of October, as part of Veterans’ Health Week, to celebrate the service and sacrifice of Aussie veterans, while raising funds and awareness of the challenges faced by those injured during service and their families.

70% of veterans who receive support from Bravery Trust are aged 50 years or younger. Most have experienced both mental and physical injuries.

Navy veteran Murray Bruce will run the entire journey on Monday 10 October to officially launch the Trek, joined by a small group of runners passionate about supporting veterans who fall on hard times during and after ADF service.

“You see different stories of people who leave the Defence Force, hit tough times and have mental health struggles. You don’t hear so much about their financial struggles, but we know it’s not far behind. And these issues persist – people who serve often carry a legacy for a lifetime” Mr Bruce said.

“It’s not just about those who have put their own lives on the line to serve our country – it is equally hard for their families. As a nation we have a commitment to support not only veterans, but also their loved ones that make sacrifices to support them, to make sure they’re not going without.”

Mr Bruce left the Navy in 1996 after 10 years of service largely in submarines including HMAS Collins.  He has forged a successful industry career since leaving the ADF and is currently Vice President of Science, Engineering and Technology at Leidos – a foundation partner and sponsor of Bravery Trek.

Bravery Trek is launched annually during Veterans’ Health Week to celebrate ADF service and unite veterans with the broader community.

Chief Executive Officer Belinda Wilson said we all have an obligation to make sure veterans who sacrifice so much for our nation’s freedoms are supported during tough times.

“Australian veterans are some of the proudest people, but sometimes they are faced with unexpected challenges, made worse by injury or illness,” Ms Wilson said.

“The battle isn’t always over when they take off their uniform at the end of the day, or transition into civilian life. Financial matters can be complex, especially when earning capacity is limited by injury or illness.

“Bravery Trust provides an immediate financial safety net for veterans and their families when facing hardship, then we work longer term to empower and connect families with support services.  We also provide a veteran specific Financial Counselling Service, to provide a pathway to financial independence.

“We know there is an intrinsic link between financial hardship and suicide and through crisis welfare and financial counselling, Bravery Trust is changing lives and saving lives.”

Join the Bravery Trek at www.braverytrek.com.au or donate to Murray’s run at the same address.

If you, or someone you know, is a veteran who has an illness or injury as a result of service and is experiencing financial hardship, contact 1800 BRAVERY (1800 272 837) or email ask@braverytrust.org.au

Bravery Trust is a registered business name of the Australian Defence Force Assistance Trust, a nationally registered charity.