Marching for Veterans 360

Supporting veterans: Clifford Fitness, Georgina Blanch and Ken Loftus from the Manning Valley 28 Army Cadet Unit have organised a 24 hour 'March-a-thon' to raise funds for homeless veterans.
Supporting veterans: Clifford Fitness, Georgina Blanch and Ken Loftus from the Manning Valley 28 Army Cadet Unit have organised a 24 hour 'March-a-thon' to raise funds for homeless veterans.

The Manning Valley 28 Army Cadet Unit (ACU) will hold a 24 hour ‘March-a-thon’ on Australia Day at Club Taree to raise funds for Veterans 360 Australia.

The event will see 25 cadets from the unit, as well as cadets from the 208 Hastings Valley ACU in Port Macquarie, march from 10am on Australia Day (January 26) until 10am the following day (January 27). 

The unit has gained support from local Taree businesses who have donated food and money for the fundraiser. 

The unit also received intentions from a woman to march on behalf of Indigenous soldiers.  

Training officer Clifford Fitness said the focus of the unit is to assist the defence force to the best of their ability.

“The main thing we think of at the unit is that anything we can do for members of the defence force is our privilege to do so,” Clifford said.

The march has taken considerable time to put together as Clifford has praised Officer Commander Georgina Blanch and Staff Sergeant Ken Loftus for their leadership.

The march will be held on Hole 19 of the Club Taree golf course where a one kilometre circuit will be mapped out.

All cadets will be required to wear their full uniform and webbing.

The main thing we think of at the unit is that anything we can do for members of the defence force is our privilege to do so.

Clifford Fitness - training officer

Club Taree’s Paul Allan said he is happy to continue support for the unit beyond the march.

"Club Taree is obviously happy to support the community wherever we can and we're happy to have this event on our property and supporting them every way we can.

"We’re certainly hoping to support them for a long time and we hope it's a profitable fundraiser for them for this year and into the future as well,” Paul said.

The unit is encouraging anyone to join in marching with the cadets on the day for a gold coin donation.

Veterans 360 Australia is a registered charity that supports veterans and ex-service members who are vulnerable, at risk of or are experiencing homelessness.

The charity also assists with injuries sustained in service, crises such as relationship breakdown, mental health and employment issues and suicide intentions.