Canada’s oldest veterans’ club extends welcome

The Army, Navy & Air Force Unit #5 invites new members to join the club 'Under the Spitfire' in Vernon

Vernon’s ANAF Unit #5 is trying to spread the word to veterans and their families about available programs to promote independence and self-sufficiency in their home and community.

“Are you getting the military pension services you deserve?” asks Alan McMahon, a veteran of the Korean War, who recently volunteered his services as ANAF pension advisor. “Do you need help with your meals, housekeeping, or yard work?”

McMahon is anxious to spread the word to veterans and their families about available programs, including the Veterans Independence Program (VIP).

VIP helps veterans remain independent and self-sufficient in their home and community. It complements existing programs and does not replace other federal, provincial or municipal programs. Depending upon circumstances and health needs, veterans may qualify for financial assistance to obtain services such as grounds maintenance; housekeeping; personal care; access to nutrition; health and support services provided by a health professional.

“ANAF Unit # 5 is one of only two meal providers in Vernon licensed under the Access to Nutrition program,” said ANAF president Alan Pothecary. “We offer prepared meals to qualified veterans, for eat-in or take-out.”

Interested individuals or families are invited to join the informal Veterans’ Lunch group on the second Wednesday of each month in the Spitfire Lounge. For further information, contact McMahon through ANAF at 250-542-3277.

Army, Navy & Air Force Veterans in Canada is Canada’s oldest ex-service organization, receiving their charter in 1840 from Queen Victoria. Membership includes current or former military, police, and emergency services; affiliated members and any interested person from the community.

Vernon’s ANAF Spitfire Unit#5 continues to thrive as community-minded adults enjoy the friendly atmosphere and entertainment in the licensed facility at 2500–46th Ave.  The licensed lounge provides inexpensive beverages and generous meals, weekday pub sports, Friday live bands, and a popular meat draw on Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. and at 2:30 p.m. on Saturdays.

“Anyone over 19 years young is welcome to join us ‘Under the Spitfire,’” said Pothecary. “Come in, sign the book, and have fun. After a visit or two, you may want to become a voting member of Canada’s oldest veteran club.”