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June 29, 2017
Legacy of resilience
Leut Sarah West
TWENTY-six Junior Legatees and
their ADF mentors have begun a
tough training program to prepare
them physically and mentally to trek
the Kokoda Track.
The group recently attended a
training camp at the Outward Bound
outdoor education centre in northern
NSW, designed to help them devel-
op the physical and mental resilience
and mateship they will need to push
through the most gruelling parts of the
96km trek through the PNG jungle at
the end of August.
The training camp, Exercise
Popondetta Prelude, involved team-
work challenges, mental resilience
training and a four-hour 8.8km trek of
Mount Warning, which started at 4am
and saw the group summit just in time
to watch the sun rise.
Legacy Australia Chairman Tony
Ralph said the special relationships
formed between the Junior Legatees
and their ADF mentors during the
training camp would be a great asset
during the Kokoda trek and beyond.
“Our Junior Legatees have already
gone through some very tough times
in their young lives because one of
their parents has been killed or inca-
pacitated as a result of their ADF ser-
vice,” Mr Ralph said. “These young
people are very special members of
our Legacy family, and Legacy exists
to support them and their families
through their toughest times.
“We also provide opportunities,
such as this Kokoda trek, to help them
grow as people and strengthen their
resilience so they may flourish in life,
despite their adversity.”
Mr Ralph said it was particularly
meaningful that the camp included a
group of serving members.
“They recognise how special these
young people are, and are devoting
their time to mentoring them through
this very challenging activity,” Mr
The commander of the coordi-
nating HQ for Operation Legacy
Australia Kokoda Challenge, Col
Chris Austin, said the ADF felt privi-
leged to support the Legacy youth ini-
“This is an extension of the won-
derful association that Legacy and
the ADF have had over many years,”
Col Austin said.
“It is vital we keep it going,
because any one of our Defence fami-
lies might need the support of Legacy
“This group is going to face mud,
rain, pain, discomfort, sleep depriva-
Sgt Dave Morley
ISOLATED communities in Timor-
Leste are getting access to clean
drinking water thanks to the efforts of
the Specialist Training Wing from the
Defence Cooperation Program Timor-
Engineer Training Adviser Sgt Roy
Litzow said DCP-TL recently conducted
a water purification capability dem-
onstration for senior members of the
Timor-Leste Defence Force (F-FDTL).
“DCP-TL engineers designed the
water purifier in 2014-2015 and the
system is now a robust, cost-effective,
portable system that can provide clean
drinking water,” he said.
“In order to establish that capability,
several soldiers have to produce clean
drinking water in the country.
“DCP-TL conducts several courses
throughout the year on water purification
using equipment designed in Timor-
Leste and made in Australia and, as
clean drinking water is scarce in several
districts, this is an opportunity for the
F-FDTL to deploy to areas in need of
“The F-FDTL HQ elements can now
task their engineer company to deploy
to districts that don’t have potable water
to provide clean drinking water for these
Sgt Litzow said many Timorese were
required to carry their household’s water
from central locations to their homes.
“When the Army comes, not only
does the quality of the water increase, it
gives time back to locals who don’t have
to carry water as far,” he said.
2nd Sgt António Manuel Soares Ly
said this was the most important training
he had been involved with since joining
“The people of Timor-Leste need
clean water to drink,” he said.
“On July 28, 2010, through
Resolution 64/292, the UN General
Assembly explicitly recognised the
human right to water and sanitation and
acknowledged clean drinking water and
sanitation are essential to the realisation
of all human rights.”
The Specialist Training Wing,
which is located at the F-FDTL base
at Metinaro, conducts several courses
including first aid, communications,
engineering and logistics in order to
assist the F-FDTL in their modernisation
Drinking in the lessons
Sgt Roy Litzow and 2nd Sgt António Manuel Soares Ly toast to clean
drinking water in Timor-Leste.
tion and perhaps even homesickness
on the Kokoda Track, and they are
all going to be challenged – probably
more than any of them have ever been
challenged in their lives.”
Col Austin said the Junior Legatees
were paired with an ADF mentor in
their home town.
“They will train with them over the
coming months, help them prepare for
the mission ahead, and eventually do
the trek with them in August,” he said.
“The supportive relationships they
have started to build will ensure the
Junior Legatees have someone by their
side when the going gets tough, not
just on the Kokoda Track, but also in
The group will set off on its trek
from Popondetta in the Oro province
of PNG on August 28, which falls dur-
ing Legacy Week.
This year marks 75 years since the
Kokoda campaign of WWII ended.
To help provide trekking equipment and
porters to the Junior Legatees, visit Legacy
Australia’s fundraising page at www.every-
Junior Legatees prepare for Kokoda trek with the help of ADF members
Sgt Jonathan Cooper, of 2/14 LHR (QMI), helps Junior Legatees disembark a raft they built at the Outward
Bound outdoor education centre in Uki, NSW.
Photo: Cpl Steve Duncan
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