Speeches

The Governor is invited to speak at a wide range of significant official, ceremonial and community events, including the Opening of Parliament, ANZAC Day ceremonies and events for Patron groups. A selection of these speeches is available below in a searchable database.

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 at Government House, Brisbane

Afternoon Reception to Celebrate the 15th Anniversary of the Pyjama Foundation

Minister Farmer; Pyjama Foundation Founder and Executive Director, Ms Bronwyn Sheehan; Board Members; distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen.

I at once acknowledge the traditional owners of the lands around Brisbane, and extend respectful greetings to Elders and emerging leaders.

Kaye and I are again delighted to welcome volunteers, supporters and administrators of the Pyjama Foundation to Government House, to celebrate 15 years of this wonderful organisation providing outstanding support to children in care.

For many people, escaping into their imaginations, learning new ideas, and being able to effectively express themselves, are capabilities they may take for granted.

This is particularly so where, from early on, there was someone there to read to them, to give them books to love, to share stories that gave them the cognitive and language skills required to define and shape their own futures.

Sadly, this is not always the experience for many of the 10,500 children in Queensland, and over 51,000 children nationally, who, through no fault of their own, are unable to live at home.

In 2004, the visionary Bronwyn Sheehan set about to change this.

Alongside the extraordinary foster and kinship carers in our communities, and the dedicated Child Safety staff, the Foundation she established works tirelessly to transform the lives of children.

Over the past 15 years, more than 8,500 Pyjama Angels have been trained and empowered.

Each and every week, over 1,400 Angels enter foster homes throughout the country, bringing with them a passion for learning, yet also one-on-one friendship and mentorship, where it is, I know, so greatly appreciated.

What remarkable achievements.

I commend the Angels with us today, and indeed all Pyjama Angels, for the remarkable job you do in building trusted relationships.

You make vulnerable children feel valued, when the world around them can be, at times, so precarious.

The commitment you make is long-term, and the work you do is not always easy. Yet I know you believe in the inclusive mission of the Foundation, and feel privileged to be able to forge connections, and cultivate skills that have an enduring, lifelong impact.  

I further congratulate Bronwyn for staying true to her original vision and for her continued determination and drive.

I thank the executive, staff, ambassadors and financial supporters – government and private, of the Pyjama Foundation, for your efforts in ensuring that services not only continue, but also expand and flourish. 

Ladies and gentlemen, it has been a great honour to support Bronwyn and the Foundation over the years – an uplifting Queensland story, now with a beneficial national reach.

This is the third such function we have hosted at Fernberg. It has been very inspiring, frankly, to meet cared-for children and their foster parents, and to realise the extent of the commitment of foster carers, Pyjama Angels, and, I should add, Child Safety Officers; remarkable people, all of them, and they have Kaye’s and my enduring admiration and support.

Congratulations to you all on achieving this milestone and I wish the Pyjama Foundation every continued success.