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Monday, 25 May 2009
Page: 4214

Ms OWENS (6:50 PM) —I rise to congratulate Ray and Shirley Wehbe, two of my local residents, for hosting Australia’s best and most delicious Biggest Morning Tea. Every year Ray and Shirley Wehbe open their beautiful home to host Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea and every year they raise thousands of dollars for cancer research. Last year they raised a remarkable $12,000 and this year seems likely to surpass all previous records. Ray and Shirley are local legends in my electorate of Parramatta, and over the years they have raised tens of thousands of dollars for a range of local charities. They are bridge builders who break down barriers and unify people, and it is an honour to call them my friends. When you are at a Wehbe function, you feel the strength of family and community.

One in two Australians will be diagnosed with cancer before the age of 85. Last year Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea raised a mind-boggling $10 million, money raised one dollar at a time by individuals like Shirley and Ray—people making a difference by helping to fund the Cancer Council’s research, prevention, education and support services. I would also like to thank the families of Christ the King School in Oatlands, who dropped in, in great numbers, for some bacon and eggs before school, and the dozens of companies in Parramatta who encouraged their workers to drop in for breakfast before work. And a special thankyou goes to Five Dock Physiotherapy for their tremendous personal contribution. Ray and Shirley Wehbe are Parramatteans of the first order, and on behalf of me personally and the Parramatta community, I thank them for their services.