Media Releases

Media releases from the Office of Susan Templeman MP.

Enquiries from the media should be directed to the Media Adviser via the Electorate Office on (02) 4573 8222 or via email to [email protected]


July 09, 2020

Blue Mountains Vietnam Veterans and Associated Forces Inc has received a grant to support the health and wellbeing of Blue Mountains veterans, Federal Member for Macquarie Susan Templeman has said.


The group received $8296 under the Federal Government’s Building Excellence in Support and Training (BEST) grants program.


“Ex-service organisations like Blue Mountains Vietnam Veterans and Associated Forces Inc play a crucial role in supporting the health and wellbeing of the defence and veteran communities,” Ms Templeman said.


“The BEST grants program provides these groups with an opportunity to expand their services to better support veterans and their families.


“These grants are an important way to assist ex-service organisations, who are committed to helping our veteran community in the Blue Mountains, and I encourage veterans who may need additional assistance to reach out to them.”


President Peter Jones said the organisation was very pleased with the funding, which would be used for purchases including a new printer. He also thanked advocate John Fenton for his assistance in obtaining the grant.


“We are very thankful to John Fenton who submitted the BEST grant, because he knows the DVA [Department of Veterans Affairs] procedures inside out,” Mr Jones said.


“Without his assistance, we probably would not have received as much as we did.”


The latest round of the BEST program saw $4.2 million provided nationally to support organisations.


“Unfortunately this doesn’t meet all the need that we see in our community. The BEST grants haven’t increased for some time, and we need to have a boost to the level of funding in future rounds,” Ms Templeman said.


“Many ex-service organisations are volunteer run and cover the cost of their vital welfare and advocacy work for local veterans out of their own pocket.


“We know the veteran support system can be complex and difficult to navigate, and that many veterans and their families rely on these organisations to access the payments and other support they need.


“Our defence personnel based at RAAF Richmond and Glenbrook is such an important part of our local community, and I know veteran services provide much-needed assistance.”


For more information on the BEST grants, visit the Department of Veterans’ Affairs website at