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Locals Raise Over $13,000 for the Fiji Cyclone Disaster Relief

On 18th March, Merrylands RSL Club hosted an event to raise funds for the Fiji Cyclone Disaster Relief. The fundraiser generated over $13,000 and in recognition of the significant contribution, the Fijian Consul General, Losana Leware Ravuso, was present at the Club for the official cheque presentation.

Cyclone Winston tore through Fiji on 20th February and was the strongest tropical cyclone to make landfall over Fiji on record. The cyclone left a trail of destruction, causing substantial damage to thousands of homes and infrastructure, and leaving many without shelter and clean water.

A total of 300 people were in attendance at the fundraising event where members of the Western Sydney Fijian Community came together and showed their support by donating much needed funds.Merrylands RSL Club also made a contribution of $5,000 towards the relief campaign.

Merrylands RSL Club CEO, Mr Bryn Miller, said“It was devastating news to hear the damaged caused to the villages in Fiji and the loss of lives. The proceeds raised will go directly to the victims of Cyclone Winston in Fiji and will assist in rebuilding communities and repairing damage to the local communities.”

Merrylands RSL Club Hosts The 2016 Gallipoli Scholarship Presentation

As the nation prepares to continue the centenary commemorations of the ANZAC’S in WWI, five winners of the 2016 Gallipoli and Bill Hall Memorial Scholarships were presented with their awards by Laurie Ferguson MP, Federal Member for Werriwa, at Merrylands RSL Club on Thursday 14th April 2016.

These Scholarships were awarded this year to five direct descendants of veterans of World Wars 1 and 2. The recipients are in their first year of tertiary studies. Importantly, the awards recognise need before merit and are of $5000 to each recipient.

Interestingly, the Gallipoli Scholarship was launched at an ANZAC Service at Merrylands RSL Club in 1987, by the then Governor of New South Wales, Mr Justice Samuels. Since then, eighty two first year students at universities have received support from the Gallipoli Scholarship Fund. This has been made possible by the generosity of donors from RSL and Services’ Clubs, RSL Sub-Branches, Veterans’ Organisations, Department of Veterans’ Affairs, businesses and individuals.

Merrylands RSL Club CEO, Mr Bryn Miller, said “As we pay tribute to the WWI and WWII veterans, we also honour the achievements of the scholarship winners for 2016and wish them well for the future.”

The traditional event began with an ANZAC Commemorative Wreath Laying Service, then lunch followed by an award presentation by the Guest ofHonour, Laurie Ferguson MP.

Recipients this year were Kaitlyn Browning from Murwillumbah, Darrell Burnet from Mornington in Victoria, Joanna Endacott from North Ryde, Willian Byrnes from Wetherill Park, and Abby Cartwright from Pucawan.

We look forward to welcoming Major General Mike Smith (Ret’d)to chair theGallipoli Scholarship committee from 2017 and thank Major General Arthur Fittock AO (Ret’d) for his 20 years as Chairman and achieving a total of $300,000 distributed in scholarships.