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Fantastic turnout at the Waikato forum

Fantastic turnout at the Waikato forum

On a sunny late autumn day close to 300 veterans and their whānau joined Veterans’ Affairs and a number of other veteran agencies at the Claudelands Event Centre in Hamilton.

Claudelands has been the biggest event space we have used so far for our forums, but it soon filled up with veterans talking with exhibitors, reminiscing with mates and lining up for a scone.

These forums are designed with veterans and their whānau in mind. It’s an opportunity for them to meet with a case manager in person, connect with local service providers, attend presentations from veterans’ support organisations and to catch up with their friends.

For veteran Corey, “attending events like this is a great way to see what else I can gain or add for me and my family.” While for Rick, “It’s better when it’s face-to-face as there’s more of a connection” and they both agreed that it’s also a good way to catch up with mates they haven’t seen in a while.

Head of Veterans’ Affairs Bernadine Mackenzie feels that the value of meeting face to face can’t be overstated; “Veterans feel more comfortable discussing issues, asking questions, learning about entitlements and giving appreciation in person and we’re here to listen.”

Our Waikato Forum followed two successful forums in Whangārei and Tairāwhiti/Gisborne. Keep an eye out for future events on our Facebook page and website.

This article was originally published as a segment in VA News. 

Read the full edition of VA News(external link)


08 November 2021