A community of service personnel, veterans and families
Wagga Wagga and the wider Riverina region is home to a significant number of current and former Australian Defence Force personnel, many of whom have returned from active service. It is also a region with a significant number of current and former Police, Paramedics and other emergency services members.
The City of Wagga Wagga hosts two significant Australian Defence Force bases – Army Recruit Training Centre at Kapooka and the Royal Australian Air Force Base Wagga, Forest Hill. These bases are responsible for training more than 5000 Army and Air Force trainees per year and employ in excess of 1000 uniformed staff. A large proportion of these staff choose to settle in the Riverina with their families at the conclusion of their military service.
Developing and nurturing positive social connections is essential for the Wagga Wagga community to better support both current and former ADF and Emergency Services personnel and their families.
Supporting Service Families
Those behind the founding of The Pro Patria Centre (PPC) identified shortfalls and gaps in the social and support services available to current and former members, and their families. It has long been acknowledged that the wider community benefits when ADF/Emergency Services members and families are included through support, education, sport and social connection. This inclusion is needed for personal and social wellbeing and creates a sense of ‘belonging’ to reduce isolation which often
hits affects this group, particularly when they depart the military. The Pro Patria Centre supports these families by connecting with each other and helps them overcome the challenges they face as a Military/Emergency Services family, in a way that is unique, yet complementary to the other ex-Service Organisations. There are many ways to succeed in life as one of these families, but very difficult to do it alone.
Improving social connections
The PPC has a range of leaders from across military, emergency services, business, community, and government sectors who support its formation. They recognise how education, compassion, and support, especially for the family unit, give people the power to change their lives, to find purpose and peace. The PPC mission and vision is to markedly improve health and wellbeing, rebuild social connections, and support training and employment opportunities, and veteran businesses.
The PPC links expert national and state wellbeing capabilities via visiting providers and video conferencing, with the needs of the region’s Defence/Emergency Services families, as well as providing a growing list of our own locally-based wellbeing services and programs. All programs are delivered in a family-friendly environment.