Kalgoorlie Soldiers’ Stomp Raises Over $30,000 for Bravery Trust
Bravery Trust is delighted to announce the final fundraising tally from the inaugural Kalgoorlie Soldiers’ Stomp charity walk has totalled over $30,000.
Instigated by Kalgoorlie army reserves Lance Corporal Dean Collins from the Kalgoorlie-Boulder 11 Platoon, the group of eight reservists and their support crew commenced the 570 km trek from Perth’s Midvale Heritage Trail at 7am on 12 November, battling heat, flies, sunburn and debilitating blisters along the way.
They reached their home destination some 17 days later on 28 November, to a welcoming crowd of family, friends, work colleagues and other reserves members. Bravery Trust ambassador Dan Keighran VC, a former resident and member of Kalgoorlie’s 11 Platoon, joined the crew on their last day’s walk into the town.
The local Coles store put on a fundraising BBQ to welcome the crew home, adding over $1300 to the final tally, as well as providing food vouchers for the crew’s rations over the 17 days. Dean’s vision for the walk was to raise awareness and much needed funds for the service veterans who return from deployment suffering PTSD and other complex health problems. He had hoped to raise $20,000 from the walk but was overwhelmed that the final tally came in at $30,795.90. “It’s been a long journey, from the planning and logistics several months out to our training walks and then the actual trek, but I’m thrilled with the support we received along the way and so glad we’ve been able to make a really significant contribution to the work Bravery Trust does with vets and their families who need our support.”
Stomp crew member Jarrod Lucas did double duty on the trek, journaling, photographing and filming the daily events for the group’s Facebook supporters and filing stories for the Kalgoorlie Miner.
Bravery Trust CEO Sean Farrell, who farewelled the crew when they set off from Perth, was in awe of their achievement. “We are very proud of what these men have done to raise awareness and funds for Bravery Trust. It is a very honourable and noble thing and we greatly appreciate their effort and commitment. We also thank all the communities who helped them along the way and everyone who made a donation. It has been a fantastic effort from everyone involved.”
Since its establishment just over three years ago Bravery Trust (formerly known as the ADF Assistance Trust) has disbursed almost $800,000 in financial aid to hundreds of Australia’s current and former defence force members, veterans and their families, providing assistance for housing and utilities costs, education needs, health care and other special needs.
It is expected that demand for the Trust’s assistance will grow significantly in the next 10-15 years as the full toll from Australia’s involvement in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflict peaks. The funds raised by this extraordinary group of army reservists, as well as the awareness they raised at community forums along the way, will help the Trust provide financial assistance to facilitate the best possible outcomes for injured and ill former and current service men and women and their families.