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Thursday, 1 August 2019
Page: 1939

Mr YOUNG (Longman) (12:56): Across the electorate of Longman we have many wonderful community groups and not-for-profit organisations who are actively working tirelessly every day and sometimes all day to give back to our community and the people who live in it. Whether it's holding a community event to raise money for a good cause or providing a service to a local family in need, I've always been left inspired by what these organisations and groups do for the people and the community of Longman. I've said it before and I'll say it again: we could all take a leaf out of their books.

Giving back to your community, whether it be through volunteer groups, non-profit organisations, charity or other means does so much to help those in need, creates cohesive and connected communities, and contributes to the common good. Giving back to our community is something we can all get involved in, whether you are at a local school as a student or even a young-at-heart pensioner. All you need to do is find your passion and find other people who share that same passion.

Passion and a willingness to help others is the reason why so many Longman community groups were formed. What we sometimes forget is that, behind the scenes, these community groups are manned by teams of hardworking volunteers who are not afraid to get their hands dirty for the good of the community they live in and love. Many of these volunteers don't receive any money for giving back to the community or for the services they give, but they work from the heart and the soul, working every day to give back to the community whenever they can. Having been assisted by a small team of volunteers throughout my campaign for the seat of Longman, I have seen for myself just how hard they work.

A lot of our community groups do their work on land, but there is one that does their best work on water. On Bribie Island we have the Marine Rescue Bribie Island Inc. (VMR 445), which consists of a dedicated team of volunteers who man the waters and provide assistance to any boats or anyone in distress. Earlier this month I had the pleasure of meeting with Commodore Liz Radajewski, Vice Commodore Ces Luscombe and other hardworking volunteers from Marine Rescue Bribie Island, where they shared with me their vision for this vital service to the community.

I could tell that they take great pride in their three vessels, called Bribie 1, Bribie 2 and Jonkers Bribie 3—very original! The biggest of those is Bribie 1, which is 11½ metres in length and can fit a maximum of 10 people on board, as well as plenty of safety gear, including a stretcher, overboard container and medical kit. Bribie 2 measures at 7.2 metres in length, and Jonkers Bribie 3 is 5.5 metres in length. I was inspired by the work that VMR Bribie Island do, and I look forward to working with them to assist in whatever way I can.

What I learnt from the meeting is that VMR Bribie Island rescue vessels are on the water every weekend, and on all public holidays all hours are covered by rostered crews to ensure a full 24-hour, seven-day service. VMR Bribie Island provides a boat rescue service 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, which is a lot of work for a small but dedicated team of volunteers. Their area of operation covers some 500 square miles, including Pumicestone Passage, commencing two nautical miles south of the Caloundra bar to 10 nautical miles off Moreton Island and north of a line east-west of Tangalooma in Moreton Bay. Their radio room also operates all year round, seven days a week. They also assist police and search, rescue, medevacs and emergency services. They do a fantastic job manning the waters around Bribie Island and they are a credit to the Bribie Island community as well as to the entire Longman electorate.

The story behind the formation of the unit may be a short one, but over the years they have become well known in the Bribie community for their integrity, dedication and generosity. The unit was born out of the Bribie Island Boating and Fishing Club, which in 1970 assumed responsibility for assisting mariners in distress. In 1982 it became the Bribie Island Air Sea Rescue, and finally in March 1997 it changed its name to VMR Bribie Island Inc., by which it is well known. Their base is located on Marine Parade in Bellara. They are well affiliated with VMR Queensland, taking direction from the Queensland Police Service, the Water Police. While they receive subsidies from various governments and other bodies, the bulk of operating funds are raised by members with the generous support of the local community. An independent volunteer organisation, VMR Bribie Island is dedicated to promoting, fostering and supporting boating safety amongst members and the boating public generally by arranging training and education programs. I'm proud to be working with such a fantastic team of volunteers at VMR Bribie Island and I look forward to continuing to assist them as their local member.

Question agreed to.

Federation Chamber adjourned at 13:01