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Thursday, 12 May 2011
Page: 3919

Mr BYRNE (Holt) (10:00): I also rise today to acknowledge volunteers that have made a significant difference in our community and, in particular, acknowledge two Hampton Park residents, who we recently recognised in a ceremony at a very important football club in my electorate for their efforts during the Casey floods. I want to do that in recognition and as part of National Volunteer Week, which is taking place this week. The member for Ryan discussed the work of volunteers. We have more than five million volunteers who, in a quiet, unobtrusive and very Australian way, make our country a great place to live, and this week we thank them on behalf of the community for their efforts.

At a local volunteer appreciation event in my electorate I was proud to present Michele Halsall and Warren Calder with their awards at the Cairns Road Recreation Reserve and thanked them for their community spirit. Michele Halsall created the Casey Floods Facebook page in February 2011. This allowed people to instantaneously communicate and share valuable emergency and recovery information after the suburbs in my electorate were deluged in February. These efforts, along with Michele's ongoing commitment to volunteering for a number of community groups, have inspired many, and she was a very worthy recipient of a national volunteer pin and certificate.

Warren Calder, a long-term resident of Hampton Park, thought of those in need when the flood went through his area and worked to assist residents removing debris from their flood-affected properties. He was literally giving people a helping hand. For the past 35 years Warren has worked hard to make the local community a better place and was named the Casey Citizen of the Year in 2000. During this time he has been involved in more than 20 community groups—and is proud to see his 10-year-old grandson following in his footsteps.

The achievements of both Michele and Warren are great examples to residents in my electorate on getting involved and becoming a volunteer. These people not only contribute to the life of the community but also, when you have crisis events like those in my electorate of Holt, are a shining example in terms of putting their best foot forward.

In the short time I have available I would like to mention the Cairns Road reserve master plan. The Cairns Road committee of management, headed by Mrs Erica Maliki, a great community fighter for the Hampton Park area, has been working for two years on a plan to upgrade the Cairns Road reserve in Hampton Park so that it has two functioning and effective ovals, an athletic track, a rugby field and a better pavilion and club room facilities. The playing surfaces and facilities there are completely substandard. Cairns Road reserve is located in the epicentre of my electorate. The master plan, which has been endorsed by the City of Casey, needs to come into fruition soon.