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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 7 Hansard (7 August) . .

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This year's National Missing Persons Week seeks to highlight members of our community that are at risk of going missing as a result of dementia or memory loss. People with dementia are at risk of wandering. This behaviour is sometimes associated with moving into a changed environment as a result of memory loss, searching for the past, excess energy, expressing boredom, continuing a long-established habit, agitation or sometimes as a result of discomfort or pain.

Part of the focus this year, though, is to highlight what is described as safe walking practices and minimising the risk of unsafe walking. There are a number of things that people can do if they have a family member or a loved one that is at risk, such as helping to maintain physical fitness, ensuring that they are dressed consistently in comfortable footwear and appropriate clothing for all weather.

Another safeguard that can be taken is preparing identification labels that can be discreetly put on a family member's clothing or other items that can be permanently with the person, such as a Medic Alert bracelet or other jewellery. There is also an opportunity to promote discreetly, amongst family and community where your loved one may regularly visit, their condition and that sometimes they may need some assistance in getting home safely.

I would urge any members of the community seeking more information or concerned about missing persons to visit the missing persons website at www.missingpersons.gov.au or to look at the fight dementia website on www.fightdementia.org.au.

IMB Building Society—grants

DR BOURKE (Ginninderra) (4.56): Tonight I congratulate and recognise the IMB Building Society's community foundation 2014 grants and the wonderful initiatives of local grant recipients. IMB Building Society has been serving New South Wales and our region since the 1880s. Its community foundation gave grants this year worth $440,000 to 50 not-for-profit organisations. Nine projects from the ACT-Goulburn region will share in over $80,000.

I had the pleasure of presenting the grants at the Belconnen Arts Centre awards ceremony and hearing of the great work recipients will be doing with their grants. The Rotary Club of Canberra grant goes towards their rotary young driver awareness program aimed at reducing death and injury amongst young people on the roads by influencing attitudes of drivers and, importantly, passengers before they get their licences.

St John Ambulance ACT's grant will assist with a project to see the establishment of six portable health clinics for St John ACT healthcare professionals and first responders to operate from when deployed at community events. These facilities will enhance and expand St John Ambulance ACT's clinical capabilities and make them more obvious at community events. Belconnen Community Men's Shed will equip their shed with safety and first aid equipment and have training in its use for emergencies. Funds will also contribute to providing personal protection gear and a defibrillator.


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