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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 11 Hansard (22 September) . .

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surrounding region. This is possible due to the dedication of over 250 trained volunteers from the ACT and region who fill shifts as part of a national network to ensure the phone can be answered 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

It is no small undertaking to volunteer to become a Lifeline counsellor; a significant training effort is required. I pass on my congratulations to those people who take on that role because it can be very personally draining. However, it is a valuable and vital support to our community.

Lifeline Canberra is part of an Australia-wide network of Lifeline centres that take calls from people in need of support at times of crisis. It might be a big crisis, a small crisis, immediate or ongoing, but whatever the situation, the Lifeline telephone crisis support volunteers provide impartial, non-judgemental, confidential support.

In addition to the telephone crisis support service, Lifeline Canberra provides a number of other mental health awareness programs to the community. I acknowledge Carrie-Ann Leeson, Lifeline Chief Executive Officer; Sarah Kentwell, Lifeline Commercial Operations and Sustainability Executive; and all of the many volunteers. When I visited the Lifeline warehouse in Mitchell a few weeks ago I met a whole lot of their book fair volunteers, including one woman I bumped into called Tricia, who as it turned out, I had worked with about 15 years previously at Medicare Australia, and we had not seen each other since. That is an example of the Canberra connections you see all around the place.

I also thank Exhibition Park staff, Toll Logistics, Universal Storage, JJ Richards and the book fair partners: Exhibition Park, Tuggeranong Good Guys, and the ANU Centre for Continuing Education. I thank also the Canberra community generally: sponsors, customers and donors. Thank you and well done to Lifeline Canberra for the great job they do supporting our community in times of crisis and helping to equip individuals to be resilient and suicide-safe. We are very privileged to have them here in our community. There are people who go out every day when called on to support community members who are in crisis.

I commend Lifeline Canberra for its outstanding service to our community each and every day through their book fair and through their telephone crisis support line. You can find out more about Lifeline at www.act.lifeline.org.au.

Assembly open day

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (4.43): I take this opportunity to thank all those who participated in the Assembly open day and made it the success that it was. I was informed by Brian Allan, who made sure that everyone who came through the building was appropriately screened, that 382 people were clicked through in the course of the open day between 10 and 2 on Sunday.

I thank the Clerk's office and his staff, particularly Max Kiermaier and Janice Rafferty, for the work that was done. I also thank David Skinner and Ian Duckworth. I thank the attendants who were on the day: Panduka Senanayake, Brian Allan, Peter Edwards, Paul Oliver, Michael Sidonio and David Chavez. I thank Merryn Gates, the Assembly's art adviser and Clinton and Libby White.


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