Viet Nam Veterans and Families Trust
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), a package of measures for addressing the concerns of Viet Nam Veterans and Families, was agreed on 6 December 2006 between the Government and the Ex Vietnam Services Association (EVSA) and the Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Association (RNZRSA).
A significant element in the MOU is the provision by the Crown of an endowment of $7 million for a period of 30 years to establish a Trust Fund with the purpose of providing support to Viet Nam Veterans and their families in relation to concerns and circumstances not addressed elsewhere in the Package.
The MOU requires the activities of the Trust to be “financed by interest earned on the endowment”. This is expected to be between $400,000 and $500,000 annually.
Settlement of the Trust
The Viet Nam Veterans and Families Trust was settled on 16 August 2007, and began calling for applications on 19 October 2007.
The Chair of the Trust is appointed by the Minister of Defence and the Minister of Veterans’ Affairs. The Returned Services Association (RSA) appoints two Trustees and the New Zealand Viet Nam Veterans Association (VVA) appoints two Trustees.
The current Trustees are:
- Lindsay Pope - Chair (Settlor appointee)
- Patrick Duggan (RSA appointee)
- Rob Hughes (RSA appointee)
- Pamela Miley-Terry (VVA appointee)
- Graham Gibson (VVA appointee).
The Trust Deed has been designed to allow the Trustees the widest possible discretion in addressing the needs of Viet Nam Veterans and their families whether living in New Zealand or overseas, by providing relief from “poverty or hardship.”
A copy of the Trust Deed can be downloaded from the “Documents” Section of the NZVVA Website Home Page.
Since it was established in 2007, the Trust has distributed $2,988,779. To see the breakdown of how this was made up, click on the link under Annual Reports to access the latest report.
Applications to the Trust
Or send it to:
Viet Nam Veterans and their Families Trust
The Department of Internal Affairs
PO Box 805
Further information can be found here: https://www.communitymatters.govt.nz/viet-nam-veterans-and-their-families-trust-2/
Priority will be given in the first instance to cases where there is immediate or obvious need or hardship.
The basic information required in an application includes:
* Who are you? Your regimental number or relationship to a NZ Viet Nam
Veteran, plus contact details.
* What are your circumstances? The situation for which you would like
* How much money do you need?
* How will this money help you?
* Have you registered with Veterans Affairs NZ.?
If you are unsure whether your situation will meet the criteria for a grant from the Trust, it is better to put in an application, rather than assume you might not be eligible. The Trust will come back to you if it needs more information.
Look out also for your fellow Viet Nam Veterans and their families, some of whom might be in real need. It might be that you know of a Viet Nam Veteran, a widow, estranged spouse or partner, or other family member who is struggling. Encourage them and help them to apply if you believe there is a need.
Registration with VANZ
The Trust strongly encourages all Viet Nam Veterans and their family members to register with Veterans Affairs New Zealand (VANZ).
As well as helping the individual Viet Nam Veteran, this will also benefit the community of Viet Nam Veterans as a whole. Registration forms for Veterans, their wives/partners, children and grandchildren (whether living or deceased) can be obtained from VANZ on 0800 4838372 or www.veteransaffairs.mil.nz
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