Presentation of The Duke of Edinburgh Gold Awards
Minister for Education and Minister for Industrial Relations, The Honourable Grace Grace MP; representing the Lord Mayor, Councillor Peter Matic; representatives from The Duke of Edinburgh International Awards Australia; ladies and gentlemen; girls and boys.
It is wonderful to join you at Brisbane City Hall this afternoon, as we celebrate the achievements of a very special group of Duke of Edinburgh Award recipients.
A total of 68 of the young men and women who we are honouring today have met the requirements of the Gold Award, meaning they have committed to more than 18 months of active participation in this historic program.
We also honour one silver medal recipient – awarded the Distinguished Service Medal.
Importantly, and looking beyond the colour of a medal, all of these men and women remain dedicated to the Duke of Edinburgh Award system.
Through their actions they have shown themselves to be Queenslanders of immense courage, commitment, diligence and personal integrity.
The Duke of Edinburgh Awards was established in 1956. There is no denying the world has changed a great deal since then.
But the importance of offering a program such as this, with its ambition to empower the youth of our world, remains as vital as ever.
More than 140 countries participate in this award, demonstrating both its continued relevance and the universality of its themes.
Civic participation, physical and mental wellbeing, improvements in employability and educational attendance, environmental awareness, social inclusion and gender equality – The Duke of Edinburgh Awards equips young people for life and work, offering them a chance to engage with others in order to empower themselves.
To the young Queenslanders here, I extend our warmest congratulations for your immense achievements.
In attaining these awards you have shown that you are capable of achieving anything you set your minds to.
No doubt you will face obstacles as you journey through your lives, but I urge you all to remember this moment as proof of your ability to overcome whatever they may be.
As Governor, and as Patron of the Queensland State Award Operating Authority for The Duke of Edinburgh International Award, I wish you all every success, both now, and in the future.