Community groups and centres

Community groups and centres

Defence maintains community centres and neighbourhood houses around Australia, where community group meetings or family-orientated activities can be held. Information on community groups and centres in the area is available from Your Community on the DCO website.

Puckapunyal and District Neighbourhood Centre

The centre connects Defence families with one another and the wider community through numerous programs and activities. These include a range of children’s programs such as dance, Tumble Tots and Story Time. The centre also has a fitness program including Zumba, tennis and boot camp and other programs including Occasional Care, Karate, Mums Bubs n Bumps, Art Club, Tumble tots , Yoga, Boxing,  Lego Club, Men’s Shed and Model Railway Club. Regular coffee clubs, craft groups and school holiday activities are among the many social events held throughout the year.

More info: Visit their website, view the list of programs they offer, send them an Manager [at] (email) or phone (03) 5735 7719.


Defence Special Needs Support Group

The Defence Special Needs Support Group (DSNSG) provides peer support and a range of programs to support Defence families with special needs. DSNSG has coordinators and groups right across Australia including Melbourne North, Melbourne West and Puckapunyal.

More info: DSNSG has coordinators and groups right across Australia. To find a coordinator near you visit their website.


**Defence families with special needs**

Defence Community Organisation (DCO) provides practical assistance to Defence families who have dependants with special needs. This assistance especially focuses on reducing the impact of relocations and minimising any interruption to specialist services that the dependant needs.

In order to receive any of the assistance and support services available, you will first need to have your dependant with special needs formally recognised by Defence. Forms and details can be found on the DCO website.

Open Arms - Veterans and Families Counselling

Open Arms provides counselling and support services to Australia's military community. If you have served one day of continuous full-time service in the ADF you can call them for support. They also support families, reservists and some peacekeepers. Call Open Arms - Veterans and Families Counselling on 1800 011 046 for free, confidential counselling and group programs to support mental health and wellbeing.

More info: Check out the Open Arms - Veterans and Families Counselling website and group programs.


The Partners of Veterans Association of Australia

The Partners of Veterans Association of Australia (PVA) is a nationwide support network for partners of past and present members of the ADF, offering support, friendship, information and understanding. PVA believes there is a great need for support for all partners/carers, widows/widowers and families of Australian veterans, both now and in the future.

More info: Visit their website to connect with your local Victorian branch, or find them on Facebook.