Official Opening of the Multicap Administration Building and Open Minds 110th Celebration, on National Wattle Day
Multicap Group Board Chair, Ms Angela Tillmanns, the Board of Directors, and Acting Chief Executive Officer, Ms Wendy Flavien; Open Minds Chief Operating Officer, Ms Kate Johnson; Lifestyle Support Worker, Mr Gary Haddad; Headspace Youth Reference Group Member, Ms Jesse Cotter; Multicap and Open Minds Leadership Teams, staff and clients; distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen.
I would like to thank the Nunukul Yuggera Aboriginal Dance Company for welcoming us to Country today. I would also like to acknowledge the original custodians of the lands on which we gather, and pay my respects to Elders, past, present and emerging. I extend that respect to all First Nations people here today.
As Patron of both Open Minds and Multicap, I am delighted to be celebrating this significant milestone with you all. The history and objectives of these two organisations are threaded together, and the positive impact they are each having on the people they help is truly admirable.
Before joining you this morning, I was given a tour of the Monte Lupo Studio—and was so impressed by the beauty and colour of the ceramic works created there by the incredibly talented artists. This studio is an outstanding example of what can be achieved when there is a visionary sense of inclusiveness. Congratulations all.
I am honoured to be here today to celebrate 110 amazing years of Open Minds—which coincides so appropriately with National Wattle Day and the first day of Spring.
When the “Queensland Wattle Day League” began in 1912, it signified the resilience and tenacity of the wattle, as the organisation helped people achieve their dreams through its art scholarships, and supported soldiers who had returned from war.
Over the years, the focus shifted, and by the time the League had morphed into Open Minds in 2003, it was—and remains—a place dedicated to assisting those with mental illness and disabilities through individual and group support.
The essential connection with Wattle Day continues, because, while Open Minds has evolved in the services it provides, it has always remained true to its origins, with an emphasis on enhancing people’s mental health and wellbeing.
Spring also represents fresh growth and a sense of new opportunity, and it is the combination of tradition, and an incredible ability for reinvention and innovation, that has seen Open Minds continue to thrive, even a decade past its centenary birthday.
The significant work your many hundreds of employees do in devising tailored support solutions for your clients across 35 locations in Queensland and Northern New South Wales, has a positive life-changing effect—not only on those you are helping directly, but also on their families, and carers.
You are helping build brighter futures by encouraging greater independence, and as I wish Open Minds a very happy 110th birthday, I also commend its Board, staff, donors and volunteers—alongside those of Multicap—for working with such dedication and compassion to achieve this significant goal.
Now, I am proud to present these certificates of Vice-Regal Patronage to both Multicap and Open Minds, solidifying my commitment to the vital work you so proudly undertake in the Queensland community. I’m also happy to share that Government House was last night bathed in green and gold, and we will again light up tonight, as we seek to do our bit to shine a light on National Wattle Day.