Afternoon Tea in Honour of World Arthritis Day
Former Premier, Mr Campbell Newman and Mrs Lisa Newman; Arthritis Queensland Chair, Dr Helen Benham; Chief Executive Officer, Ms Emma Thompson; distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen.
I at once acknowledge the traditional owners of these lands and extend respectful greetings to Elders and emerging leaders.
Kaye and I are delighted to welcome you all to Government House.
This afternoon we gather to honour the work done by Arthritis Queensland, and to mark World Arthritis Day.
Of course, World Arthritis Day actually falls in October. But the experiences of this past year have instilled in us all a new kind of agility. Our usual schedules have been thrown off-course and we have become adept at accommodating change. And so, we must take these moments to celebrate when we can.
Arthritis is an umbrella term covering a great many conditions affecting joints. For those living with arthritis, diagnosis and treatment can be a long process, and one that, like with many illnesses, is daunting.
And while there is sadly no silver bullet cure, many of these conditions are becoming more manageable, thanks to the advocacy, support and care of remarkable organisations like Arthritis Queensland.
It is with gratitude and appreciation that we recognise the many donors, some of whom are here today, without whose support, this organisation simply could not exist.
I was particularly delighted to learn of the success of the organisation’s inaugural ‘Big Give 4 Arthritis’ giving day in October last year.
That there were some extraordinary individual contributions to that cause, speaks of the enormous respect in the wider community for Arthritis Queensland.
That stellar reputation is thanks in no small part to the many researchers, physicians and scientists who have dedicated their careers to curing this illness.
This afternoon I particularly mention Professor Ranjeny (pron. Ran-jen-knee) Thomas, whom I was honoured to appoint as a Member of the Order of Australia in September last year for her service to medical education and research, and to rheumatology.
I am sure that the work of scientists such as Professor Thomas and all those associated with Arthritis Queensland will be instrumental in years to come as we expand our understanding of arthritis and, hopefully, one day talk of it in past tense.
Until that time, we must keep our support and hope with Arthritis Queensland, the work, reach and benefits of which I am so proud as Patron and Governor to recognise. Thank you.