From: Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Subscription List
Sent: Tue 20/11/2012 12:43 PM

BRINGING AWARENESS TO INVISIBLE WOUNDS

A new series of online videos aims to bring more awareness of the mental health issues faced by some of our current and ex-serving members of the Defence Force, following active service.

The Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Warren Snowdon, said the videos offer an insight into the experiences of veterans and current sailors, soldiers, airmen and women, and their families post deployment.

“The pace of military operations has increased considerably over the past decade and we have seen some of the impact of this increase, along with the multiple deployments some members of the Defence Force undertake,” he said.

“This impact is not only felt by those who served, but also their family and friends.”

The series of videos feature current servicemen and women, veterans and family members, including an Afghan war widow, sharing their experiences in dealing with issues from depression through to anxiety and loneliness.

“I hope this series starts a discussion among the current and ex-serving communities on subjects that can be a sensitive topic amongst these groups. We want to reduce the stigma that is associated with seeking help, and talking openly to others about any problems you may be experiencing.

“Reaching out to others is not a sign of weakness, there are other people out there going through the same thing you are. The message out of all this is that help is out there, and help can make a difference,” Mr Snowdon said.

The videos, produced by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA), were launched today by Mr Snowdon at the 2012 Ministerial Summit for Veterans’ Administration being held in Canberra.

Delegates from Canada, New Zealand and the United States attended the summit to discuss several topics, with support and care for veterans, and servicemen and women high on the agenda.

The videos are available for viewing online at the DVA YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/DVAAus or via the DVA Facebook page www.facebook.com/DVAAUS

Media inquiries:
Minister Snowdon: Marcus Butler 02 6277 7820 or 0417 917 796
Department of Veterans’ Affairs Media: 02 6289 6203