Page 1007 - Week 03 - Thursday, 23 March 2017

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MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I thank Ms Orr for her question, because I have not had enough questions today, Madam Speaker. It is a very timely question as the fourth Connect and Participate Expo is on this Saturday, 25 March. The expo is a demonstration of our commitment to ensuring that people of all abilities feel included in Canberra, not just in getting a job or in accessing services but in being able to do the ordinary social activities that many Canberrans take for granted.

We all know that people with a disability often face barriers in connecting with interest groups and with clubs. This social exclusion can be linked to health risks, both physical and mental. As a free event, the CAP expo, helps Canberrans of all abilities and ages to join groups and build social connections around common interests.

The CAP expo seeks to ensure that all Canberrans can enjoy, connect and participate in the social and creative life of our city. I would encourage all members to attend the expo this weekend. Transport Canberra offers a free, accessible bus service to the CAP expo, running a loop between the Civic interchange and the old bus depot building between 11 am and 2 pm this Saturday.

Given my colleagues’ interest, I would also flag that the 938 service from Woden interchange stops on Wentworth Avenue just near the old bus depot where the expo is being held and, of course, off-peak travel would be free for senior and concession MyWay cardholders as part of the government’s current trial.

MS ORR: Minister, what sorts of groups and organisations can we expect to see at CAP Expo?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: There will be over 110 stallholders at the CAP expo this weekend, with a variety of different groups represented, from sport and recreation groups to craft, music, performing arts, hobbyist, social and special interest groups.

On Saturday, the groups who will display at the expo include Bellyup Bellydance, a belly dance school and performance troupe based in Tuggeranong. They are a family-friendly group and share their love of belly dance with women of all ages and abilities.

Capital Petanque club will also be there, a group of players with an interest in promoting the social French bowling game. It can be enjoyed by Canberrans of any age and athletic ability. All you need is three boules and you are ready to play.

Friends of the National Arboretum, a community organisation dedicated to supporting the arboretum as it evolves into a unique attraction of international renown, will also be represented at the CAP expo. This organisation always welcomes new volunteers, and you do not need to have any particular experience of expertise in things botanical.

Many of these groups will also be providing “come and try” activities such as tai chi, Royal Scottish country dancing, and fencing. There will be dance performances,

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