Sergeant Annie Dufficy is carrying on her family’s proud tradition of mixing Indigenous culture and military service.

“My grandfather was in the Torres Strait Light Infantry Battalion, my father was in the infantry and my two younger brothers and I carry on in their footsteps,” Sergeant Dufficy said.

“There are many benefits to military life, but I think having a sense of belonging and being part of a team is the biggest benefit of joining.” 

Sergeant Dufficy holds an important administration role with Force Support Element 10 and is currently deployed on Operation Accordion in the Middle East.

She said diversity of culture in Defence reflected the diversity across the wider Australian community. 

“The Australian Defence Force [ADF] is a good example of an organisation that embraces not only my Indigenous culture but the many cultures that represent Australia,” she said.

“No matter who you are, if you work hard you are given the opportunities, like me, serving in the Middle East.”

“The ADF is a good example of an organisation that embraces ... the many cultures that represent Australia.”

During NAIDOC Week, all personnel in the Middle East will pause to recognise the unique skill sets, knowledge and perspectives that Indigenous personnel bring to the Australian Defence Force .

The ADF theme for NAIDOC week this year is ‘working for a shared future’.

Sergeant Dufficy said children were key to a shared future as they would inherit their ancestors’ legacy.

“I believe we need to support our youth and inspire them to have a voice,” she said.

Sergeant Dufficy is excited about returning home to the Torres Strait to her family during her mid-deployment break. 

“Going home will reconnect me with my culture and ensure my son stays connected to his culture,” she said.