Our Impact in 2023

29 April 2024

2023 marked 10 years of Mates4Mates providing support to veterans and families, and with every year of operation, we are proud to see the impact of our services within the community continue to grow.

2023 marked 10 years of Mates4Mates providing support to veterans and families, and with every year of operation, we are proud to see the impact of our services within the community continue to grow. 

Since Mates4Mates was established in 2013 by RSL Queensland, over 11,000 veterans and family members have accessed our services, finding support for their mental, physical and social health at our centres and outreach locations across Australia, as well as online. 

In 2023, veterans and family members across the country accessed Mates4Mates services to support them in finding a way to reconnect and recover. 

Mates4Mates has changed my life immensely. It has provided me with purpose and the opportunity to connect with other people. It gives me somewhere to go where you feel safe, and your boundaries are respected.” – Chris*, veteran, NT.  

Mates4Mates has helped me to understand the military mindset and the difference in experiences between myself and my husband... It’s nice to be recognised as a partner with a journey of my own.”  – Jane*, veteran’s partner, TAS. 

Throughout 2023, Mates4Mates provided over 38,300 opportunities for client connections across our mental health and physical rehabilitation services, social connection activities, and Skills for Recovery Programs, a 40% increase on the previous year.  Take a look at our 2023 Impact video to find out more.  

  

 

Designed to help veterans and family members recover from physical injuries and improve wellbeing, over 6,800 physical rehabilitation and wellbeing services were delivered to the community in 2023.   

I’ve been actively involved with Mates4Mates for eight years and I don’t know how I would get on without them. The organisation has enabled me to understand what condition my health was in and how to help that, they’ve helped me to get going with my life again.”  – Daniel*, veteran, SEQ. 
 
Working closely with accredited exercise physiologists, veterans and family members are provided effective and individualised treatment through a range of services, including physical rehabilitation, hydrotherapy, health education, pre- and post-surgery rehabilitation, group fitness activities, movement for mental health, and more.  
 
At Mates4Mates, we know the impacts of service are not always visible and those within the Defence community can experience unique challenges that can impact their mental health and wellbeing. We are happy to share that last year, our clinical team delivered over 4,400 mental health and wellbeing services to veterans and family members. 

Beyond the personal impact, you also see people come into the centre who are not in a good place, but you have the chance to watch them grow and be able to laugh again. I remember the first time I laughed again was so special; it was amazing to have found this supportive place to work through your emotions and feel that joy again.”  – Celia*, veteran, NQ. 

Using a range of evidence-based therapies, our mental health team are here to help our clients manage their concerns and improve quality of life through psychology, counselling, and social work services.  
 
Knowing injuries come in many forms and there cannot be a one-size-fits-all approach to recovery, Mates4Mates offers Skills for Recovery Programs, a service stream that was delivered on over 3,100 occasions in 2023.  
 
Our programs are designed to build resilience and assist with emotional-regulation and distress tolerance; these programs are designed to give the veteran community the skills and strategies to manage their long-term wellbeing.  

Mates4Mates has given me the ability to take control of my health and has had a positive impact on my relationship with my family, my kids, and improved my social life.” – Daniel*, veteran, SEQ. 
 
Finally, an important part of wellbeing and recovery, Mates4Mates successfully provided over 23,900 occasions of social connection, creating opportunities for veterans and families to have meaningful connections within the community.   

Through these connections supported by Mates4Mates, veterans and family members are able to find mateship and purpose once more.  

Mates4Mates has made me feel that I’m still connected to the Defence community. Walking into the centre one day, I saw a friend I had served with and not seen for 27 years. The organisation brings back that mateship mentality and makes you feel surrounded by your Defence family again.” – Steven*, veteran, NQ. 

In our 10th year, 2023 was a year full of memorable milestones, achieved by the community built between veterans and families accessing Mates4Mates services and our passionate and dedicated staff. We are proud to have received a 95.8% rating from clients who were ‘very happy’ or ‘happy’ with the services they received from our team last year. 
 
We would like to thank everyone who offered their support through community fundraisers, partnerships, and donations. Your generosity has allowed us to continue providing vital services to veterans and families impacted by service.  
 
If you would like to support veterans and family members impacted by service, please visit supportmates4mates.org.   

 

*Names have been changed for privacy reasons. 

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