Page 3102 - Week 10 - Tuesday, 23 August 2005

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The scheme, endorsed in the United Kingdom by the National Neighbourhood Watch Association, places greater emphasis on positive relationships between people in a neighbourhood.

I understand from the article that there is a similar scheme happening in New Zealand. My media release continues:

Mrs Burke said with greater emphasis on the importance of Neighbourhood Watch in our community it was important that neighbours fostered greater relationships.

Good Neighbour Day could be used by the ACT Government as a positive public awareness campaign to better connect neighbours across the Territory.

The connection of neighbourhoods can lead to reduced levels of crime, improved social harmony and a greater sense of community, where people want to look out for each other.

Groups like Neighbourhood Watch have admitted publicly that they are always looking at ways of rejuvenating the scheme across Canberra.

I am encouraging the Government to get on board and establishing “Good Neighbourhood Day” in Canberra, which would allow Neighbourhood Watch to extend its links in the community.

And so it goes on. I received a letter from the minister. In the concluding paragraph, he says:

The government will continue to seek ideas to enhance the Canberra Community and I thank you for your suggestion and I will have my department investigate it further.

Obviously, they must have done. They have told Mr Mackay. I will be very pleased if that goes ahead next year. I need to point out to the government and the board that it is not a new idea. It has taken an awful lot of money to come up with suggestions that laypeople in the community, and even MLAs, can come up with from time to time.

Heritage grants

MS PORTER (Ginninderra) (6.21): I rise this evening to speak about the 2005-06 ACT heritage grants program. Members would be aware that this program is the major source of government funding for community based heritage projects and assists in the conservation, preservation and promotion of heritage in the ACT.

This year, 58 applications were received and, of those, 26 projects were successful in being awarded grants. Last Friday morning it was my privilege to present letters of offer totalling $262,000 to the successful organisations. Many of those who received grants are organisations that comprise either entirely, or almost entirely, volunteers.

Coming as I do from a long history of community involvement, I know at first hand how much can be achieved when those with a common interest and goal come together. With relatively few resources they are able to achieve great things. Partnerships are important

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