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Gold Coast veterans graduate.

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Federal Member for McPherson, Margaret May presented Certificates of Attendance to Members of Ex-Service organisations who had recently completed a five day training program.

Margaret congratulated those graduating and also Volunteering Gold Coast who developed and delivered the program which received an Australian Government Veteran & Community grant of more than $23,400.

Margaret said: "The five day training program is the first time its been delivered in Australia and trainees came not only from Gold Coast City but Brisbane, Beaudesert, Uki and Lismore.

"The purpose of the training program was to build the capacity of ex-service organisations to deliver better outcomes to the veteran community through the development and delivery of identified skills training. Those who have taken part in the program say they feel a lot more confident because of the skills they have developed and are better equipped to assist the veteran community.

"The training program covered a wide range of topics including the rights and responsibilities of volunteers, recruitment and training of volunteers, policy and procedures, leadership skills, peer support and family support guidelines, working with the frail and aged and effective communication.

"This grant has helped Volunteering Gold Coast develop and deliver a skills development training program for the veteran community on the Gold Coast and the Tweed Shire and built the capacity of ex-service organisations to deliver better social support outcomes for the local veteran community.

"Australians are grateful to our veterans and service personnel for their service and sacrifice in war and conflict and for their continuing contribution to our community.

"Through these grants, the Australian Government is recognising the important contributions that have been made by our veterans by providing project funding to ex-

service organisations and other groups who meet the needs of our local veteran community", she said.