Westside Christian College, Jindalee Districts Australian Football and Netball Club, Family Support Centre Inala

House of Representatives
21 October 2021

I rise to give credit and thanks, congratulating Westside Christian College Principal Mr Barry Leverton on his retirement. He leaves service of this wonderful school after 24 years of faithful service. Barry's tenure as principal has seen the school go from strength to strength, and I'm sure his legacy will continue within the school community for many years to come. His tenure as principal was marked with compassion, faith and an overriding commitment to serving the Christian values of the college and the educational wellbeing of every single student. I wish Barry and his wife all the best for their retirement and I look forward to continuing to support Westside Christian College as they enter a new chapter with a new school leadership team in place.

I'd also like to extend my congratulations to the Jindalee Districts Australian Football and Netball Club, also known as the JAGs, on their 50th anniversary. While I will be quarantined while they celebrate this significant milestone and, sadly, won't be able to join them, I have had the honour of joining them for many presentation nights over my time as their local federal member. What stands out for me is their culture of inclusion and support, where kids are celebrated for their enthusiasm and effort along with their achievements. Congratulations to Wayne, Michael, Corey, Bill, Rob, David and so many volunteers in a fantastic year for the club even amongst the challenges we faced.

This club is consistently growing its ranks for many years, increasing the membership from 150 members just six years ago to 620 players today. They're particularly proud that 45 per cent of their players are now women and girls. Congratulations to the Jindalee JAGs on 50 years of success. I wish you luck for 50 more.

Another community group celebrating an anniversary recently is the Family Support Centre Inala. I was privileged to celebrate this milestone with many volunteers earlier this month alongside the great Queensland boxer Jeff Horn, who came along to support his wonderful mum, Lisa, who has worked at the centre for almost 18 years.

For over 20 years the centre has provided almost $3 million worth of support to over 50,000 in need. They provide financial assistance as well as things like food, furniture, emergency bill payments, education expenses, Christmas hampers, gifts, vouchers and so much more to our wider Inala community. I know from speaking to our local state member, to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and to her father, the Hon. Henry Palaszczuk, who helped establish the Inala Family Support Centre, just how valuable this centre is to our local community. These services make a real difference in the lives of people in our community, who are struggling, those who find themselves in times of crisis. The motto of the centre is, 'We turn nobody away.' The impact of their support upon the Inala community cannot be underestimated or understated.

I particularly want to acknowledge all of the hardworking volunteers who for so many years have served our community, particularly the conference President, Monica Tupicoff and her wonderful team of volunteers, who turn up each week, day in and day out, to support so many in our community, in particular many from non-English-speaking backgrounds who have come to Inala as their first home. They're always made to feel welcome and completely included. I recognise the dedicated work of all the volunteers past and present. I wish them a happy anniversary, and long may they continue the good work of the St Vincent de Paul Society in our community.