Veteran Wellbeing Centre

The State Government is reactivating the Repat as a thriving health precinct that delivers on the needs of the community. An essential component of the Repat site activation is the inclusion of services and support for the veterans’ community. Thanks to an additional $5 million in Commonwealth funding, the Repat will be home to a dedicated Veteran Wellbeing Centre.

The Wellbeing Centre will provide a safe and welcoming environment in which veterans and their families can access services and feel confident in seeking the support they need to improve their health and wellbeing.

The development of the Wellbeing Centre will sit within a broader Veterans’ Precinct at the Repat site, ensuring the Repat Chapel, Remembrance Gardens, Museum and SPF Hall are protected and preserved as community assets, acknowledging the history of the Repat site.

Through the Wellbeing Centre and broader precinct, the State Government aspires to have a community of veterans and their families having the support they need to live the best possible life, during and beyond service.

The Centre, which is anticipated to open in April 2021, will provide a place for veterans and their families to meet and connect and access a range of health and wellbeing programs such as counselling, advocacy services and group activities.

Veteran Wellbeing Centre Anchor Tenants

The Department for Health and Wellbeing recently undertook a Request for Information process to target veteran specific organisations to establish themselves at the Centre as ‘anchor tenants’. Anchor tenants are the organisations that will maintain a structured, ongoing presence at the Centre and provide essential services including accredited veteran wellbeing and compensation advocacy services; mental health assessment and clinical counselling; and health and wellbeing programs.

Following this process, the South Australian Government will partner with four well-established veteran organisations to be the inaugural anchor tenants at the Centre from April 2021.

The inaugural anchor tenants are:

  • Plympton Veterans Centre.
  • Open Arms: Veterans & Families Counselling.
  • RSL SA.
  • Soldier On.

The four anchor tenants have significant experience in delivering services to veterans and the veteran community, and will collectively provide a broad variety of services to ensure patients receive a range of care promoting their health and wellbeing.

Anchor tenants will provide accredited veteran wellbeing and compensation advocacy services, mental health assessment and clinical counselling, and a range of health and wellbeing programs including employment, education and social connection.

Expression of Interest Prospectus

An Expression of Interest (PDF 1MB) has been released for supporting veterans and their families at the Veteran Wellbeing Centre. The Expression of Interest seeks any organisation to register their interest in supplying services to veterans and the veteran community, within or in partnership with the Centre.

This Expression of Interest is an information gathering process in which the Department for Health and Wellbeing seeks to collect information from organisations that may use the Centre on a casual basis, that may seek to establish referral pathways and/or who may propose to make use of the Centre, or the surrounding facilities including the SPF Hall; other Repat Health Precinct assets; and other connected facilities.

The Department has developed a response template (PDF 528KB) to assist organisations in participating. Terms and Conditions (PDF 91KB) are also provided for information.

Please note the Expression of Interest remains open and is an ongoing process. The Department welcomes any organisation to register their interest as the Veteran Wellbeing Centre develops over the coming year.

An information session on completing the Expression of Interest was held online for all potential respondents on 18 December 2020. A question and answer summary (PDF 58KB) has been developed for potential respondents not in attendance.

Veteran Wellbeing Centre Steering Committee

In consultation with the Veterans’ Health Advisory Council (VHAC), SA Health has established the Veteran Wellbeing Centre Steering Committee (Steering Committee) to provide advice and direction on the development and implementation of the service model, and to support the initial establishment phase of the Centre.

The Chair of the Steering Committee is the Presiding Member of VHAC, Geoff Tattersall, and the Steering Committee membership includes:

  • Deputy Presiding Member of VHAC, Ilona Horan.
  • Director, Veterans SA, Catherine Walsh.
  • Chief Executive Officer, RSL SA, David Grenvold.
  • Administration Manager, Plympton Veterans’ Centre, Bill Hignett.
  • Director, Open Arms Veterans and Families Counselling (Central West), Marcus Schmidt
  • Director, Health Services Programs, Department for Health and Wellbeing, Penny Thyer
  • VHAC Executive Officer, Chris Lemmer

Here are the Terms of Reference (PDF 342KB) for the Steering Committee.

The Steering Committee held its first two meetings on Thursday 16 July 2020 and Thursday 10 September 2020.

Proposed Centre Concept and Fit-Out Plan

In May 2020, plans were finalised for the $60 million second phase of the Reactivating the Repat redevelopment, including the Veteran Wellbeing Centre, with the landmark project being approved by the Public Works Committee.

The Infrastructure team within the Department for Health and Wellbeing has engaged with veterans and the veteran community to develop the concept plans for the Centre, and the Steering Committee received a presentation on the proposed plans at its meeting in July 2020. A working group from the Steering Committee will now have a role in working directly with the architect and engineers to determine the exact specifications of the build and fit-out.

Operational Service Model

The draft Operational Service Model (PDF 547KB) for the Centre is a working document which describes the key components required to establish the Centre, including:

  • the engagement process that has and continues to be worked through;
  • an understanding South Australia’s veteran context;
  • building on lessons learned from other initiatives;
  • the proposed building design and concept layout;
  • governance arrangements; and
  • the process for establishing service providers at the Centre.

The draft Operational Service Model will develop and evolve over time as organisations are engaged to provide services.

For more information about the Repat site visit the Reactivating the Repat page.