Queensland Council of Social Service 2023 Queensland Community Impact Awards Dinner
Chair of the Queensland Council of Social Service, Mr Matt Gardiner; Chief Executive Officer, Ms Aimee McVeigh; Distinguished guests; Awardees; Ladies and gentlemen.
I, too, begin by acknowledging the Traditional Owners of the lands around Brisbane, the Turrbal and Jagera people, and pay my respects to Elders past, present and emerging, and to all First Nations people here this evening.
Graeme and I are honoured to be with you at this stellar event, now in its second year. As Governor of Queensland and Patron of the Queensland Council of Social Service, it is wonderful to be able to publicly acknowledge the outstanding contributions made by this sector to the betterment of all communities in this State.
Tonight, we celebrate the announcement of winners across four categories: frontline hero, community impact, human rights, and neighbourhood centre.
We also acknowledge the exemplary community work that has been carried out by so many others this year.
It is indeed humbling to see how many groups and individuals are represented for their incredible contributions in supporting Queenslanders through tough times.
When it comes to cost of living, social housing, youth detainment, homelessness, domestic and family violence, workforce diversity, mental health, income support, access to resources, and disability services, the social service sector leads the way in offering real support and, perhaps as importantly, hope to individuals and groups in need.
Given the enormity of these issues, I would like to express my gratitude to the Queensland Council of Social Service and the work that you do.
Your advocacy, policy development and community engagement are responsible for innumerable positive social outcomes, and I am in no doubt that it also saves lives.
Your vision of achieving ‘equality, opportunity and wellbeing for every person, in every community’, is ambitious, but it needs to be.
Without this vision of a better world, the goal of bringing about meaningful improvements in so many people’s lives might seem simply unachievable.
Your commitment and dedication to this goal would suggest that nothing is impossible if we focus on the greater good, foster a sense of connection and belonging for all people within our society, and strive to overturn the disadvantage that pervades it.
In the meantime, the efforts of our social service sector workers and countless volunteers will continue to lift people up, led by the example organisations such as QCOSS set.
Specifically recognise four awardees, identified as having had an exceptional impact. I look forward to presenting your awards shortly.
Before that, I would like to present a Patronage Certificate to Mr Matt Gardiner, and once again acknowledge with gratitude the efforts of the entire organisation.