Our People

Mr. Paul Murphy

Patron and Founder of the AVVRG

Paul was born in Sydney and proudly accepts that he is a Manly Boy, spending hours from a very young age surfing at Queenscliff.
With a name like Murphy it is assumed that a catholic upbringing and education were the norm. A family relocation to Canberra changed that direction and State high schools were chosen to complete the process.

A keen rugby player in high school saw an early retirement at age 15 due to two consecutive bone breaks occurring in the process of scoring tries.
In his final year, Paul was elected School Captain, complementing his role of both class and House captain.
Entering the commercial workforce an opportunity presented itself three years later in the form of compulsory National Service for 20 year-old males.
In 1966 he volunteered for National Service. He was only 19. He was posted to the 2nd Battalion RAR and served as an infantry rifleman with service in Vietnam in 1967.

Several years later Paul entered the newspaper industry which enabled him to obtain a press pass and returned, purely out of curiosity, to Vietnam in 1990.
The visit was a turning point in his life. The destruction, the homeless, the hunger and absolute breakdown of infrastructure left him emotionally drained. A promise was made to the Vietnamese in 1990 to provide aid to Vietnam. Four long years later approval was granted.

The AVVRG was born in 1994. The first project, the rebuild of the Hoa Long Primary School was completed on the 13th. December 1994 and officiated by Paul and the Australian Consul General from HCMC Mr. Peter Baxter.
Hoa Long was rebuilt by volunteers from Australia, (including Paul) all self-funded and all proud of just what can and was achieved…. ‘individuals CAN make a difference’

As the saying goes, ‘The rest is history’. Hoa Long gave the AVVRG virtual carte blanche into AUSAID in Vietnam. Weeks later, the second project was approved, the AVVRG Orphanage at Go Cat Hoa Long.
The intervening years have seen hundreds of multi-disciplined professionals and others with simpler but no less important skills impart their knowledge hands-on or via tutoring to thousands of eager and appreciative Vietnamese. In earlier years, it was the volunteer who built, painted, dug, repaired or replaced for and on behalf of the Vietnamese in need.

Paul lived and worked in Vietnam 1995 -2000 and again 2004-2007 planning future projects, overseeing current projects, hosting visiting medical and R&M teams., hosting politicians, school groups, annual Australian naval ship visits and tours of projects. Anzac and Vietnam Veterans Day were planned, approvals sought and obtained and officiated over by the AVVRG.

In 2000 Paul was awarded the Centenary of Federation Medal for service to the Veteran Community.
In 2007 The Vietnamese Government awarded Paul the ‘International Friendship Medal’ for service to Vietnam.

Our executive team

Paul Miller

Greg Miller

President and Chair Dental Care Team



Rob Scott

Vice President


Ted Samojlowicz

Ted Samojlowicz

National Treasurer



Madi Gillespie

National Committee and Chair NSW Community Aid & Education


Jackie Wright

Jackie Wright OAM

National Committee and Chair Health Education Team

Val Porter

Val Porter

National Committee and Chair Mental Health Team