Neighbourhood Watch Queensland is a great link between police and the community. Members of local Neighbourhood Watch groups are filled with incredibly generous people who think nothing of giving up their time to help others. Their efforts help our neighbourhoods be connected, supportive and safe places to live. I am very privileged to have a number of Neighbourhood Watch groups in my electorate of Algester. I pay tribute to all that they do, which of course, as we in this place all know, is much more than many would appreciate.
Earlier this week I was honoured to host a dinner in Parliament House for the executive of a number of Algester electorate Neighbourhood Watch groups. The generosity that we see in the community was once again on display at our dinner table. The conversation was dominated by the sharing of hints, advice and ideas about how to serve our communities, and even contacts and resources were offered up to help each other.
Owen Roberts and Jocelyn Marentis, two very wonderful people from Forestdale Neighbourhood Watch, whose group celebrated its 25th birthday last year, generously shared some of the secrets of their success, including what they have been doing in preparation for this Sunday’s Forestdale Neighbourhood Watch Motor Show and Country Markets, being held at Lincoln Green Park.
Alanna Ngo, the area coordinator for Heathwood Neighbourhood Watch, and treasurer Kinnari Shelat, who I have to say are absolutely incredible women, are passionate about making a difference in their community. Alanna, Kinnari and the team are working hard to prepare for their now annual picnic in the dark event on the Halloween weekend. If it is anything like last year, it will be a huge success.
Robert Stack and Margaret Madden from Hillcrest Neighbourhood Watch, whom I am absolutely in awe of, have worked tirelessly to establish the group and are making a real difference in our community. They are also busy preparing for their community meet-and-greet event at the Sweetgum Street Park this Sunday. I look forward to being part of the celebrations.
I also mention Rod Rush and Ray Rogers from Lakewood Neighbourhood Watch. They were not able to make it to dinner this week, but I know that they would have been just as generous with sharing their experience with others. Those wonderful people are true community heroes and our neighbourhoods are made all the better for their hard work, their generosity and their desire to make a difference.
In the short amount of time I have left, I also congratulate the P&C and staff of Grand Avenue State School. Last week they held their third annual Ekka Funday. Once again, it was a huge success. It is estimated that over 5,000 people attended the event. I worked on the barbeque stall with the federal member for Oxley, Milton Dick, and local BCC councillor Charles Strunk, along with a number of our volunteers. I can tell the House that it felt like every single one of those 5,000 attendees ordered a sausage on bread or a steak burger, because we were run off our feet. The school made some $30,000 for a number of activities that the P&C is committing to, to improve playgrounds and equipment for the students at the school. Congratulations, once again, to Grand Avenue State School.