Defence Housing Australian today donated a cheque for $30,000 to Soldier On, raised through the sales of popular DHA lime green Viking beanies.

DHA Acting Managing Director, Jan Mason, said the beanies were originally designed as a promotional give-away but then DHA began collecting donations at Canberra Raider’s games during last year’s NRL season. Beanies were also sold via the Raiders’ online shop.

‘Raiders fans responded with tremendous generosity and enthusiasm so we continued to collect donations through this season,’ Ms Mason said.

‘Soldier On is an organisation that has had extraordinary growth since it began in 2012 and its aim to help serving and ex-serving men and women reintegrate is a worthy and important cause.

‘At DHA we create communities where Defence members as well as other Australians live, raise families and forge relationships with their neighbours so we feel an enormous connection with Soldier On and a deep respect for the work they do.’

Ms Mason thanked the Canberra Raiders for their enthusiastic endorsement and support of the fundraising project.

‘The club allowed beanies to be distributed at home games as well as sold via their Raiders’ Shop website and this resulted in sales to fans from as far away as Queensland and the UK,’ Ms Mason said.

‘And of course none of this would have been possible without the fans themselves. They enthusiastically and generously supported the project.’

Ms Mason said DHA was proud of its four-year association with the Canberra Raiders, which had culminated in the club’s successful 2016 season.

‘The Raiders have made history this year and we were pleased and proud to be part of that journey,’ Ms Mason said.

Raiders Chairman, Dr Allan Hawke, said his club’s association with DHA would be remembered as an exciting and successful period. Dr Hawke said fans had shown their true colours by supporting the Soldier On fund raising project.

“Raiders’ fans understand mateship and there’s no better way to support our mates who have served than by supporting Soldier On,” Dr Hawke said.