25th Annual Bravehearts Ball
Minister for Children and Youth Justice, Minister for Multicultural Affairs the Honourable Leanne Linard MP; Leader of the Opposition, Shadow Minister for Tourism and Shadow Minister for Olympics and Paralympics, Mr David Crisafulli MP; Shadow Minister for Child Protection, for Prevention of Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence and for Women's Economic Security, Ms Amanda Camm MP; Former Minister for Home Affairs, the Honourable Karen Andrews; Representing Commissioner Katarina Carroll APM, Detective Acting Chief Superintendent, Crime & Intelligence Command, QPS, Mr Denzil Clark; Deputy Commissioner Operations, Australian Federal Police Deputy Commissioner Brett Pointing APM; Bravehearts Chair, Ms Vanessa Garrard; Deputy Chair, Mr Andrew Hay; Board Members and members of Braveheart’s executive; dedicated supporters; distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen.
I begin by acknowledging the Turrbal and Jagera peoples, original custodians of the lands on which we gather and pay my respects to elders, past, present and emerging.
I am delighted to be joining you this evening, in our magnificent City Hall, to acknowledge and celebrate 25 years of invaluable work by Bravehearts.
In 1997 a courageous Hetty Johnston stepped forward and shared her family’s devastating experience of child sexual abuse. It also gave her a strong desire to help others facing the same heart-wrenching reality – and so, Bravehearts was founded.
As Governor and Patron I am enormously proud to represent and encourage such a groundbreaking organisation. It was the first in Queensland to offer a lifeline to those impacted by child sexual abuse, and it has risen to become a leading advocate in the sphere of child protection.
From the outset Bravehearts quickly recognised that protecting children and supporting survivors of child sexual assault are paramount, for if left undiscovered the repercussions for individuals and communities can be lifelong, and often devastating.
Today, the success of Bravehearts is reflected by the organisation’s incredible public support and its far-reaching community involvement. From the delivery of information programs to raising awareness in all sectors of society, young children have been empowered and our communities and workplaces realigned, to act upon our collective abhorrence and intolerance of child sexual assault and exploitation.
None of this could have been achieved without efficient and effective management and work practices, and I congratulate the Bravehearts Board, CEO Alison Geale, the staff and volunteers, both past and present, for your professionalism, tenacity and commitment to ensuring the ongoing safety of our children.
There is, of course, sadly still more work to be done, and financial support is crucial in keeping the Braveheart vision front and centre with the Queensland public.
Tonight’s ball is a highlight on the fundraising calendar, and I would particularly like to acknowledge the Bravehearts Ball Fundraising team for their time and dedication in organising this spectacular evening.
Finally, and most importantly, I want to thank each and every guest here tonight. By buying your ticket, dressing-up, participating in tonight’s festivities and sharing your experience with family, friends and colleagues, you too have become advocates for Bravehearts.
I truly thank you for attending and wish you all a brilliant and fun-filled evening. I am delighted to now present a certificate of Vice-Regal patronage to Bravehearts Chief Executive Officer, Ms Alison Geale.