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Thursday, 14 August 2003
Page: 18664

Mrs DRAPER (12:39 PM) —Following on from the previous speaker, the member for McMillan, I want to say that I am a very proud member of the coalition government. I am proud to be serving under not only the Prime Minister, John Howard, but also the Deputy Prime Minister, John Anderson, who is also Leader of the National Party. Some of the reasons why that is so should become clearer during my speech.

On Friday, 8 August I had the pleasure of announcing the first successful projects in the Playford-Salisbury region—part of which is in my electorate of Makin, but more of which is in the Labor seat of Bonython—under the federal government's Sustainable Regions Program. The Sustainable Regions Program was announced by Deputy Prime Minister John Anderson in August 2001. It aims to increase economic activity and employment opportunities in specially chosen regions of Australia. Playford-Salisbury is one of only two outer urban regions in Australia to receive assistance under the program. It is an approach based on partnership—regional communities managing change, realising their potential and leading their own development, with the government supporting new ideas, self-reliance and achievement. Since the program began, 95 projects have been approved in the eight prototype regions, with funding totalling over $28 million.

The members of the Playford-Salisbury Advisory Committee, all of whom are local people, carried out extensive community consultations to ensure the needs of the local community were identified in order to help realise the region's long-term potential to be economically vibrant, socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable. Key themes that emerged from the community consultation included: advanced manufacturing skills development; biodiversity; pathways to employment, education and training; transportation; waste and energy; water management; and social inclusion. The projects I announced last Friday will form a part of the region's framework for education and training initiatives.

It was with great honour that, on behalf of the Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon. John Anderson, I had the pleasure of presenting cheques to the following local projects. I presented $325,320 for the Northern Industry, Education and Employment Partnership organised by the Electronics Industry Association. This project establishes an institute to develop education and employment pathways into the electronic, automotive and other advanced manufacturing industries, which are a key part of this region's economy. There was $133,100 for a peer tutoring project run by the University of South Australia. The project aims to improve tertiary education participation by the region's students, particularly in science, engineering and information technology. It will provide successful tertiary participation role models for students among their peers and family structures.

There was also a grant of $113,960 to the Learning for Life scholarship program run by the Smith Family. This will deliver the Smith Family's Learning for Life scholarship program to an additional 235 students in the region. The program seeks to break the cycle of poverty by assisting students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds to remain within an educational institution to develop learning and life skills so they can gain employment. We also had $71,500 for the Creating New Learning Opportunities project run by the City of Playford. The project will extend the City of Playford's mobile library service to preschools and primary schools. It will include computers and Internet services to give students and parents access to literacy software and global information.

These four projects represent the beginning of a program which will ultimately provide funding of up to $12 million to the Playford-Salisbury region for various projects aimed at revitalising economic activity and creating job opportunities. At the announcement last Friday, committee chairman Peter Smith paid tribute to the Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon. John Anderson, and spoke of his passion for helping communities in regional areas to overcome obstacles and build upon their strengths. Thanks to the efforts of our government and especially thanks to the Hon. John Anderson, many young people in the Playford/Salisbury region adjacent to my electorate will be given the opportunity to learn new skills and gain employment in their local community. I thank the Deputy Prime Minister.