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Thursday, 21 October 2010
Page: 1135


Ms BURKE (1:48 PM) —On Sunday, in between going to the 50th anniversary birthday lunch of Box Hill Lions, a terrific organisation that I want to commend for its efforts, and the 25th anniversary afternoon tea of the Monash Volunteers Association—it was a big birthday weekend—I had the pleasure of attending Syndal South Primary School to present an award to Mark Beovich. Mark was recognised out of 9,000 coaches Australia wide as the best community coach in Australia for 2010.

Mark is part of the volunteer coaches in the Active After-School Communities program, and I want to put on the record my appreciation to the minister for extending this terrific program. Mark is a triathlete and he is coaching kids in primary school to become triathletes. On Sunday at Syndal South 100 kids were working out what it meant to be a triathlete, because we did not have a swimming pool, although that did not dampen the enthusiasm.

Mark is a tremendous member of our community and we need to recognise and reward such people who give of their time for free. Mark gives of his time for free after school, as well as being a very involved triathlete and part of the Nunawading triathlete community, which has an exceptional club. Mark not only does the coaching but has actually put together the seven-week training program that is now being used across Australia in the Active After-School Communities program and he also encourages kids to stay active. A lot of kids do not want to go into traditional sports and this is a great way of encouraging them to stay active. An active kid becomes an active adult. (Time expired)