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Wednesday, 11 December 2013
Page: 2470

Mr THISTLETHWAITE (Kingsford Smith) (09:42): . The Ted Noffs Foundation was founded by a great Australian humanitarian, the Reverend Ted Noffs, in 1970. During the Reverend Noffs' remarkable career, he pioneered a number of initiatives for young people. He established Sydney's first 24-hour crisis centre in 1968, set up the first drug referral centre in Sydney in 1967, co-founded the Aboriginal Affairs Foundation in 1962, and was the co-founder of Lifeline in 1963.

The Ted Noffs Foundation continues the legacy of the great Ted Noffs by providing essential services for young people and their families who are experiencing drug and alcohol problems and related trauma. The foundation runs a number of important programs for young people that, importantly, are based on leading research. The foundation is continually evaluating and appraising the success of its programs. An important program that the Ted Noffs Foundation runs is PALM, the Program for Adolescent Life Management, which is a residential program of up to three months for young people with serious alcohol and substance abuse problems. That program runs in five locations throughout Australia, and one of those locations is in Avoca Street in Randwick, in my electorate. I was fortunate recently to visit the residential program there and to see the wonderful work—the inspiring work—that the Ted Noffs Foundation is doing with young people afflicted by drug and alcohol problems. They also run day programs, and the Street University—a recently created free educational, artistic and recreation centre for young people in Liverpool and surrounding areas.

Earlier this year the Ted Noffs Foundation applied for a Building Multicultural Communities grant of $85,000. The grant was to install interactive whiteboards and teaching aids in their residential facilities, to ensure that these kids that are undertaking these three-month residentials do not lose the opportunity to continue their school education. That funding was awarded by the previous government. Unfortunately, that funding is now being reviewed. I recently met with Matt Noffs, the grandson of Ted Noffs, who is continuing Ted's great work. They are visiting parliament today to implore the Abbott government to meet the commitment of $85,000 under the Building Multicultural Communities grants to ensure that they continue that great educational work as part of their residential program. The Building Multicultural Communities Program was fully funded to the tune of $14.5 million in the budget. I urge the Abbott government to continue to fund this program.