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Monday, 27 February 2012
Page: 1884

Mrs ANDREWS (McPherson) (12:15): Today I would like to speak about two very important community organisations in my electorate of McPherson on the Gold Coast: the Coolangatta Senior Citizens Centre and the Robina Lions Club. These two organisations do great work in different areas of the southern and central Gold Coast and their efforts certainly deserve recognition.

Firstly, I would like to talk about the Coolangatta Senior Citizens Centre, of which I am the patron. The centre is located on the southern end of the Gold Coast and provides wonderful support and services to its 1,200 members as well as to other local seniors both from the southern Gold Coast and from northern New South Wales. Seniors make up a large section of the community on the southern Gold Coast. Through this centre a variety of activities for senior citizens are offered seven days a week, including: bingo, indoor bowls, line dancing and monthly bus trips and concerts. Importantly, the centre offers these activities at very affordable prices so seniors are able to participate in a wide range of activities without incurring a huge cost.

On 20 January this year I was invited to attend the centre's January concert, and I was very pleased to accept that invitation. I took the opportunity during a short break in the concert to recognise the great work that the centre does by presenting them with a very special Australian flag that was flown in the House of Representatives chamber on 12 September 2011. I congratulate the president of the centre, Sue Wickham, the vice-president, Carmel Finn, and their team on the fantastic work that they do. I look forward to continuing to work with the Coolangatta Senior Citizens Centre.

Secondly, I would like to acknowledge the Robina Lions Club. On 22 February I attended the judging of the Robina Lions Youth of the Year Quest, which was held at Bond University. Each of the six contestants, all of whom were women, were outstanding and should be very proud of their efforts. Each contestant was required to answer impromptu questions followed by a prepared speech, and I would like to acknowledge each of those contestants: Caitlin Gallagher, from Varsity College, who spoke about fear; Ayu Imoaka Asis, from Robina State High, whose speech was entitled 'Is beauty a beast?'; Sophie Tan, from Somerset College, who spoke about the Horn of Africa famine; Alynna Li-Vy Wong, from Robina State High, who gave a speech on 'Fear of the unfamiliar'; Janie-Marie Burgess, from Marymount College, who spoke on 'Gatecrashing and the juvenile criminal system'; and Madaline Hartwig, from St Michael's College, who spoke about 'Staying Australian'. Congratulations to the public speaking winner, Alynna, and the overall winner, Janie-Marie, who will go on to the next round of the competition on 3 March. Congratulations also to the president, Heather Veltmeyer, the chairman on the night, John McIntyre, and the Robina Lions for the wonderful community work that they do.

I am very proud to work with these two groups and will continue to do so into the future.