MAY I express my sincere thanks to the Wimmera Mail-Times staff and the representatives of the West Wimmera and Central Wimmera branches of the Country Womens Association who so generously got together to help celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Country Women column earlier this week.
It was quite overwhelming and humbling.
We received apologies from East Wimmera Group president and branches, as well as the Central Wimmera Group president who I understand is overseas at present.
I urge all branches to support the column – it is for the CWA and is a very accessible means of communication which is freely given to us through the Mail-Times.
Rene Vivian, Horsham
Keep the focus on sport
THIS month, across the state, elite and community AFL clubs put aside traditional rivalries to unite in our love of everything that makes footy great.
Things like skill, talent, loyalty and fun, competition, team spirit, MVPs and extraordinary or memorable moments.
Seventy-five per cent of teenagers today believe that gambling is a normal part of sport, which is not surprising, given the huge volume of sports betting advertising.
But the promotional hype doesn’t acknowledge there are risks and harms associated with gambling.
We as a community need to do that, which is why all 10 Victorian AFL clubs and more than 300 community clubs signed up to the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation’s sporting club program – many of which participated in the Love the game-themed round on July 21.
Whether a player or a fan, it’s about loving the game, not the odds.
For more information, visit lovethegame.vic.gov.au or share your thoughts on social media, #LoveTheGame.
Craig Swift, acting chief executive, Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation
Honouring war service
SIXTY-FIVE years ago, the armistice ending three years of fighting on the Korean peninsula was signed.
Within days of the invasion of South Korea by North Korean forces on June 25, 1950, the United Nations Security Council had the support of 21 member nations to defend South Korea, including Australia.
The Royal Australian Navy and the Royal Australian Air Force committed forces to the United Nations effort in Korea within a week of the war’s beginning.
Australian ground troops arrived in September 1950.
The armistice was signed on July 27, 1953 and the last troops did not leave Korean shores until August 1957.
About 18,000 Australian service personnel served in Korea between 1950 and 1957, including Army and Royal Australian Air Force nurses.
Australia suffered some 1500 casualties including more than 350 who lost their lives and 30 who were taken prisoner. More than 40 Australians are still listed as missing in action.
The Korean War marked the first collective UN military action and Australian sailors, soldiers and airmen won international respect for their courage, endurance and combat skills.
Sadly, looking back on the Korean War, one Australian soldier remarked that ‘most Australians of the Korean War regard themselves as the forgotten veterans of a forgotten war’.
In this, the final year of the Anzac Centenary, it is my sincere hope these words are no longer true and that the men and women who bravely served in the Korean War know that Australia honours their service.
Each year on July 27 we observe Korean Veterans’ Day and I encourage everyone to honour the service and sacrifice of those who served in the Korean War so they know they are not forgotten.
Lest we forget.
Darren Chester, Veterans’ Affairs Minister