THE Kilmore-Wallan RSL Sub-Branch is encouraging Mitchell Shire residents to stand in their driveways at 6am on Saturday as a mark of respect to war veterans for Anzac Day.
With COVID-19 restrictions forcing the RSL to abandon normal Anzac Day services, a social media campaign began to find ways for people to still be able to pay tribute.
Kilmore-Wallan RSL president Rod Dally said RSL Victoria was encouraging everyone to stand in their driveways, holding a candle or light of somesort at dawn.
The North Central Review and community radio station OKRFM have joined forces to support the initiative.
Residents can tune into 98.3FM, either by radio or via its website, okrfm.com.au, at 6am to hear The Oath, The Last Post, a minute’s silence and The Rouse.
The Review has contracted a photographer to take aerial footage of the scene in Wallan, and encourages all residents, particularly in the Taylors Lane and Rowes Lane area, to take part.
The drone will capture photographs from Rowes Lane to Pretty Sally estate, which will be made available to the public in next week’s Review and via the newspaper’s website.
“As mark of respect, we encourage people to stand in their driveways for that short period of time to show veterans they are still not forgotten,” Mr Dally said.
He said branch members were planning to take part in the initiative, while practicing social distancing rules.
“We are also talking to all our neighbours to join in – its the only way to do it at the moment,” he said.
Kilmore-Wallan RSL is also encouraging the public to donate to the Anzac Appeal online this year.
“Australian’s have been purchasing Anzac badges from RSL volunteers in the lead up to Anzac Day for almost a century. Buying and proudly wearing an Anzac Appeal badge is as much an Anzac tradition as attending a dawn service,” Mr Dally said.
“If this was a normal year, volunteers from our sub-branch would be out and selling Anzac badges right now in support of the annual Anzac Appeal.
“However, 2020 is not a normal year, and Victorians need to stay home to help limit the spread of COVID-19.”
“Our RSL is doing its bit, and our volunteers will not be fundraising this year.
“Instead, we are asking our community to support the Anzac Appeal by making an online donation at anzacappeal.com.au. It’s very safe and secure, and it’s easy to do in just three simple steps.
“Money raised through the online appeal will go where it always has –to fund vital services for veterans and families.”
Meanwhile in Beveridge, 13-year-old Briana Moschetti of Mandalay will play the ‘Last Post’ at 6am on Anzac Day, as a way to commemorate fallen soldiers.
Being unable to attend services due to COVID-19 restrictions has meant musicians wanting to pay tribute from their homes have found ways to be creative to contribute.
Music for Mateship is an online group which will unite Australians by enabling them to play their musical instrument of choice at the end of their driveway.
Briana wanted to participate, and along with her mother Carolyn, she dropped off letters to her neighbours to let them know of her plans.
Ms Moschetti said having Briana play was a good way to remember her family members who had gone to war.