Walking to save lives

“Some of you will know a Veteran who is suffering from a mental health condition and if you don't then I am one of those Veterans,” says Zane. He explains why it's important to support the March On challenge and what personal reasons motivated him to be part of it.
This March Zane has decided to participate in the Soldier On fundraising campaign, March On. The campaign encourages participants to raise funds by completing a 96 km walking challenge throughout the month of March. This is the length of the Kokoda Track, a single-file foot thoroughfare that is renowned as the location of the World War II battle between Japanese and Australian forces in 1942. Funds raised support mental health services and programs for Veterans and their families. 
 

Funds raised will support mental health services and programs for Veterans and their families. 

 
Zane is walking his 96 km too.

"Those support services can often save someone's life

they have definitely saved mine"


Over 14 years, serving in the Royal Australian Air Force, he stood many times shoulder to shoulder with servicemen and women on and off the battlefield, but it’s the first time Zane is supporting his fellow veterans through raising money. 
 
Today, a veteran himself, who is no stranger to challenges, Zane knows how important support services are if you decide to transition to civilian life:
 
Zane, doing the March On challenge “I am doing this year's March On to help raise money for those support services that can often save someone's life, because they have definitely saved mine.”
 
The transition wasn’t easy.
Zane had his own battle with mental health and rehabilitation. 
 
It was Soldier On that helped guide Zane to where he is now: 
 
“They provided a place for me to stay, people to talk to, social activities to connect me with different people, they helped write me a resume and link me with companies.”
 
For Zane, it was his friendship with Andrew ‘Mung’ Perry that motivated him to do the challenge. 
 
Mung and Zane served together for more than seven years. 
 
“Mung is a legend of the Airfield Defence Guard mustering and everyone that knew him will have a story.”
 
On 20 Dec 2015 Mung took his own life. 
 
Friends and colleagues, who knew Mung, are generously donating and sending messages of encouragement for Zane.
 
Framed drawing of Andrew ‘Mung’ Perry
 
The March On challenge is a way to give back to people who helped veterans like Zane:

“I signed up to raise money and create awareness that it is OK to Speak Up and ask for help. And to hopefully inspire people to chase those goals and change.”
 
By supporting our partners Soldier On, you are supporting the wellbeing of our veterans and their families.
 
       

 

Soldier On is a leading support services provider working side by side with those who serve and protect Australia and their families. Soldier On facilitates a range health and wellbeing, education, employment and social programs to target some of the key issues service personnel, veterans and their families face with integration into civilian life. BAE Systems Australia has been supporting Solider on since 2015 and we are honoured to be the primary supporter of the veteran volunteering program Serving On.

Serving On supports veterans to build skills, resilience and connection through meaningful volunteer work and involves monthly projects in various locations, in collaboration with other community-based organisations.

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BAE Systems Australia 1 March 2021