As ANZAC Day (April 25th) fast approaches, now is a time for all Australians to pause and remember our fallen heroes of past wars and also to provide support to our current deployed personnel and those who have recently returned from operations.
The aim of this program is to provide some material support for our deployed forces through the provision of care packages that contain donated items including magazines, lollies or toiletries.
Australia has almost 2,400 uniformed Defence personnel in the Middle East, including 1,550 in Afghanistan.
How to donate Care Packages
A care package can be sent free of charge to the below AFPO address so long as it strictly complies with Australia Post guidelines.
In order to qualify for free postage, care packages can weigh no more than 2kg (cubed) and should be packaged within a “Bx2” size box, which is available from Australia Post for approximately two dollars.
You will also be required to present photographic identification, fill in some customs forms and it is suggested that you use a liberal amount of packing tape to ensure that all of the contents arrive at their destination.
In order to ensure parcels reach the widest possible number of personnel, please ensure they are gender neutral and address all parcels to “An Australian Defence Member” and not to a specific job title, trade or unit.
Additionally, please note that Defence is unable to accept care packages for Military Working Dogs or Explosive Detection Dogs due to their strict diet and training requirements.
The unique Australian Forces Post Office (AFPO) box will be open until 12 April 2013.
In order to ensure the packages reach personnel by ANZAC Day, all packages must be lodged with Australia Post no later than 12 April 2013.
To send a care package or letter of support to an ADF member posted overseas, address the package or letter to:
An Australian Defence Member
Australian Defence Force NSW 2890
What can be included in Care Packages
Be creative with donations while being mindful of Australia Post’s guidelines for the free delivery of care packages. Some suggestions are listed below, as are the general restrictions. It is recommended that any donated goods collected by EOs, and which are unable to be sent due to size or weight, be donated to local charities.
• Anzac biscuits
• Salted peanuts
• Muesli bars
• Instant noodles
• Small tinned consumables
• Other commercially manufactured and packaged foods that are non-perishable
• Deodorant (non aerosol)
• Shaving cream (non aerosol)
• Small bottle of talcum powder
• Disposable razors
• Shower gel
• Lip balm
• Magazines – from Vogue and Women’s Weekly to Men’s Health and Wheels
• Puzzle books
• Letters of support
• Posters and letters from school children
• Stamped, self addressed envelope – this way personnel can thank you for the package
What not to include
- Pornographic material
- Alcoholic beverages
- Any food prepared or cooked at home, including cakes and biscuits
- Clothing (except socks)
- Pork products
- Perfumery products
Other Ways to Support the Troops – email or postcards
Sending a care package to our troops is a great way to show support, but it may not always be practicable to do so. There are a number of other ways you may like to show support for our troops and their families this ANZAC Day.
For people who would like to express their support through a simple letter, you may like to email a message to:
Please include your name, suburb and state at the top of the email message and please know that Defence may publish their letter on Defence websites and social media sites so the message reaches more ADF members and their families. Personal details of the sender are not published.
For those who would prefer to send a message in the traditional way, there is the option of sending a postcard. The address details are:
Messages to the Troops Media Section 39 Personnel Support Battalion Building 217 Randwick Barracks NSW 2031
Donate to the RSL Australian Forces Overseas Fund
For people who are unable, or who perhaps don’t have the time, to put together a care package, another option is to donate money to the Returned and Services League (RSL) Australian Forces Overseas Fund.
The RSL’s Australian Forces Overseas Fund enables the RSL to send biannual care packages to ADF members as well as Australian Federal Police and Other Government Agency personnel serving overseas.
More information about the RSL’s Australian Forces Overseas Fund can be found by going to:
Another option is to make a donation in support of those personnel who have been wounded on operations and to those family members who are suffering financially and socially from the death of a loved one.
You might like to donate to either Legacy or Soldier On this ANZAC Day to help these organisations support those ADF personnel injured in the line of duty and the families of those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice. The respective websites are: