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Defence Member and Family Support

For ADF members and their families

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New name for DCO

Apr 12 2021

Defence Member and Family Support have taken the time this year to reflect on our purpose and vision for the future.



We’re excited to announce that we will officially change our name to Defence Member and Family Support (DMFS) from 1 July 2021.

DMFS was formed in 1996 when the three Services’ family support organisations were brought together. Since then, DMFS has grown to have a nation-wide presence with on-the-ground services delivered from local area offices and ADF transition centres.

It’s important that Defence members and their families see DMFS services as something accessible to them as part of their community. Recently there’s been some feedback that families may think DMFS is outside Defence and therefore not applicable to them.

To overcome that misconception, we undertook staff and stakeholder consultation, which also included Defence Families of Australia, the Department of Veterans’ Affairs and a number of ex-service organisations. This consultation helped to come up with a new name that people could look at or hear and immediately know what we do and who we do it for.

The new name was selected because of its strong alignment to our vision and clear description of ‘what we do and who we do it for’. There will be no changes to the services we currently provide to Defence families.

The date of 1 July 2021 has been chosen to officially change the name because it coincides with DCO’s 25th anniversary. This is a chance to look back on where we’ve come from, where we are and where we want and need to go. Leading up to the change, you’ll start to see DMFS increasingly used so by the time 1 July rolls around there won’t be any surprises.

We’re really excited to start this new chapter supporting Defence members and families!

This article was published in the 2020 Spring/Summer issue of Defence Family Matters.

Family at DMFS stall