Legacy Week in the Middle East 2017
31 August 2017
Australian Defence Force personnel in the Middle East have raised more than $32,000 for Legacy through 2017 and are looking to add to the total during Legacy Week.
The sailors, soldiers, airmen and airwomen will be selling, and wearing, Legacy badges from August 27 to September 2 to show their support for Legacy Week 2017.
These badge proceeds will be added to funds already raised by personnel deployed on Operations OKRA, HIGHROAD, MANITOU and ACCORDION through a number of events over the year.
Commander Joint Task Force 633 (JTF633) Major General John Frewen said supporting Legacy was an important part of being an Australian sailor, soldier, airman or airwoman deployed on operations.
“Legacy supports the families of those who didn’t come home from operations, as well as those who lost their current or ex-serving spouse or parent at home,” he said.
“It’s a charity which is close to the hearts of many Australians who are currently serving in the Middle East region, and many people at home, my own included.
“I’m quite proud of the staggering amount of money the Task Force has been able to raise over the year.”
Throughout 2017, ADF personnel across the region have held events and competitions to raise money for Legacy.
At Afghanistan’s Camp Qargha, outside of Kabul, Australian Army soldiers and their coalition partners, including the British, Dutch and New Zealand armies, have raised more than $16,500 AUD through a series of auctions, the first of which was held on Anzac Day.
Captain Tim Coulter, Qargha’s designated auctioneer, kept the crowd’s attention as they auctioned off sporting merchandise, the chance to have one of their officers perform section duties and other memorabilia.
“It was great to see everyone so keen on pitching in and having a laugh during the auctions,” he said.
“It’s all a bit of fun but the money we raised helps to support an important cause.”
At Camp Baird, Australia’s main operating base in the Middle East region, ADF personnel have raised more than $16,800 through regular events including raffles, trivia and bingo nights.
While the events may have contributed to an important cause, HQJTF633 Command Warrant Officer, Warrant Officer Ken Robertson, said they were also important to maintain morale among the deployed personnel.
“Looking after your mates is one of the core parts of being a member of the ADF,” he said.
“These social activities give all of us the opportunity to check up on each other, as well as contributing to make sure the families of our mates who didn’t come home are looked after as well.”
ADF personnel deployed to the Middle East region are actively involved in training, advising and assisting Iraqi Security Forces in their fight to defeat Daesh, mentoring the Afghan National Defence Security Forces in Afghanistan, and maritime security operations in Middle Eastern waters.
There are about 1700 ADF personnel deployed throughout the Middle East region under Operations OKRA, HIGHROAD, MANITOU and ACCORDION.