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Crafts connecting veterans

By Tanayah Wakefield

What began with a handmade storage box and a couple of quirky bottle lights has become a thriving concern helping support veterans and their families.

Established about three years ago, the Citizens’ Auxiliary Hobby Shed at the Pine Rivers RSL Sub Branch gives members a sense of purpose and connection, as well as raising money for veteran support services.

As interest in the Hobby Shed grew, so too did the variety of crafts members produced – expanding to creative clocks, lovingly carved children’s toys, planter boxes and more.

Pine Rivers RSL Citizens’ Auxiliary president Nigel Wilson says he joined to get out of the house, stay active and learn new skills.

“I came as a volunteer, and I started off by mowing lawns and cleaning toilets. That was four and a half years ago,” Nigel says.

“Then I started making bottles with lights in them and selling the odd one here and there to raise a bit extra and it snowballed.

“Then we started making the planter boxes and it took off like a rocket.

“The craft ladies came in and saw them and that was it for the next six months – we made nothing but planter boxes,” he laughs.

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