Help Legacy continue to make a positive difference to local families
  • Monday 26 August 2019
ImageLegacy Sunshine Coast’s support has helped local mother and daughter Shelly and Jess Tome navigate through the toughest six years of their lives since their husband and father Lloyd – a former Royal Australian Airforce Corporal – passed away in 2013.

Legacy cares for the families of Australian Defence Force men and women who have lost their lives or have health issues. Legacy currently supports the families of over 1000 veterans across the Sunshine Coast.

“Legacy has made the biggest impact over these six years by being there for us initially, by giving me the time to pause and grieve, and then by helping me find the strength to talk about the difficult things and then the courage and knowledge to go through the processes that I never thought I would be able to do,” Mrs Tome said.

“Ongoing financial support has helped me give Jess the resources to pursue her equestrian sports over these years and helped me to support Jess through her senior years at school. I am forever grateful to Legacy and I cannot thank them enough. I know that Lloyd is looking down on us feeling at ease, to know that ‘his girls are doing ok’.

With Legacy Week 2019 kicking off on Saturday September 1, Sunshine Coast Council Mayor Mark Jamieson said he wanted to shine the spotlight on the incredible work the organisation does and urge the community to support the foundation.

“Many people probably don’t realise that Legacy does not receive any ongoing government funding,” Mayor Jamieson said.

“Its services are entirely funded by donations and support from the general public and supporters in the corporate and community sector.

“When you pause and think about how much they do and what they contribute to the families of our defence personnel when they are in need, theirs is truly a major achievement.

“Legacy is a source of support and advocacy for widows through the most challenging time in their lives, from accessing war pensions and other entitlements through to providing ongoing companionship and involvement in social activities.

“In Australia, research has found that one in ten people lack social support, and one in six people experience emotional loneliness.

“Unless appropriate interventions occur, such as the important work and services provided by Legacy, the number of people that are most at risk of social isolation in our community would continue to grow.

“Local government, as the level of government closest to the community, has an important role to support our community to be active and empowered – but we cannot do it alone.

“Legacy’s work and investment in our community epitomises the collective approach that underpins our draft Sunshine Coast Community Strategy 2019-2041.

“With this in mind, I have recently approached a number of other organisations to see how they might help in some way to support the services that Legacy delivers and the families which Legacy assists”.

Legacy Sunshine Coast Chairman Lee Shimbel said the demand on Legacy services continues to grow.

“Legacy supports approximately 10 new families in south-east Queensland each month,” Mr Shimbel said.

“We are helping young families at an increasing rate and there are many more who desperately need our support.

“Legacy is committed to ensuring the young families of veterans are not disadvantaged, by providing educational support and financial aid.

“We nurture children’s education by contributing towards school fees, books, uniforms and recreational activities, such as our annual Youth Camp, to foster their self-development and confidence.”

“We also assist older widows through pension advocacy, counselling, special housing, medical and social support.

“Our regular contact program alleviates the risk of social isolation and loneliness.

“Legacy is dedicated to enhancing the lives and opportunities of our widows and families through innovative and practical assistance.

“We are the only organisation in the world that does this important work and we ensure that no spouse or child of a veteran suffers financially and socially after the death or serious injury of their loved one.

“Legacy badges may be small, but the funds they raise make a big impact to those who have given up so much and need us to continue to stand by their side during the tough times.

Members of the community are encouraged to support Legacy at one or more of the following events during Legacy Week and beyond, or call Legacy Sunshine Coast on 5443 9841.

Friday 30 August –
Legacy sausage sizzle fundraiser at Bunnings Maroochydore (all day).

Sunday 1 September – Saturday 7 September
– Legacy Week – “Buy a Badge”
Volunteers will be selling Legacy badges and merchandise across 30 Sunshine Coast locations including shopping centres, markets and RSL Clubs. All location details available on Legacy’s Facebook page: facebook.com/LegacySunshineCoast/ or call Legacy 5443 9841.

Saturday 9 November – Annual Remembrance Day Concert at Lifepointe Centre, Wises Road, Maroochydore. Featuring the Sunshine Coast Concert Band and other local entertainers. Afternoon tea provided, Tickets $15 and can be purchased by calling Legacy on 5443 9841.