Page 1003 - Week 03 - Thursday, 10 April 2014

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which raised over $600,000 last year; the doorknock appeal, which raised $320,000 last year; and the CEO sleep-out, which raised nearly $500,000 last time it was held. Last year the society organised a homelessness forum with Sir William Deane as part of the Canberra centenary activities.

I would like to place on the record my thanks to the members of the Canberra-Goulburn territory council—the president, Frank Brassil; spiritual adviser, Sister Liz Rothe; vice-presidents, Linda Barry, Warwick Fulton, Nick Stuparich, Lorcan Murphy and Stephanie Hawkins; and regional presidents, Ted Smith, John Nieuwendyk, Damien Kenneally, Michael Van Wanrooy, Rebecca Bromhead, Vin Kane and Brad Moffitt.

I would also like to thank the CEO, Paul Tresize; executive officer, Jane Rosewarne; HR director, Shayleen Barlow; market and fundraising director, Mark Thomson; special works director, Shannon Pickles; property and operational services director, Mike Taarnby; finance director, Camila Allen; youth director, Sarah Clifton; and centres director, Lindsay Rae.

Finally, I would like to particularly thank all the volunteers who are involved with the society’s activities. Organisations like St Vincent de Paul rely heavily on volunteers, who often go unrecognised. I commend the St Vincent de Paul Society in Canberra-Goulburn on their significant achievements, and recommend that members visit their website for more information at


MS BERRY (Ginninderra) (4.52): Tonight I am excited to be heading out to Belconnen basketball stadium to open the national under-18s basketball competition and the Kevin Coombs cup. Whilst I am only relatively new at being a politician, I have been playing basketball here in Canberra since before the Belconnen stadium was built. As a basketballer and the aunt of a couple of former southern junior league players, I know these tournaments can be stressful times. All of the young people attending the tournament have trained hard to be in the position they are in and to represent their state. But I also know that all of the young people will be good sports and I know, for many states and clubs, attitude plays a strong role in whether a player is selected at all. It is my hope that their good sportsmanship is reflected across the tournament. Even though I will secretly be hoping to see the ACT take home the gold, when I get down there to watch, I will be cheering on all the teams just as loudly.

It is also timely to note the good work many clubs are already doing in standing up against homophobia and transphobia. Having been a long-time player, I know there is a significant improvement in the inclusivity of many club cultures.

Finally and briefly, because I am keen to get down there and watch the games, I would like to mention how pleased I am to be opening the Kevin Coombs cup. It is extraordinary how far wheelchair basketball has come since Kevin wheeled his 40-kilogram chair onto the courts in the 1960s Paralympics. Through the dedication of players and supporters, wheelchair basketball has become, over a very short time, a fast-paced, elite and sometimes brutal game that I love to watch. It is my hope that over time it will receive the kinds of funding and audience it deserves.

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