House debates

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Statements by Members

Higgison, Ms Debbie

1:51 pm

Photo of Ed HusicEd Husic (Chifley, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Minister for the Digital Economy) Share this | | Hansard source

Mount Druitt has got a stack of community champions and one of their greats is Debbie Higgison. Debbie's an inspiration with so much passion and dedication for an area that she loves so much. Over 20 years she's devoted herself to improving lives in the Mount Druitt area, particularly focusing on helping young people. She's been a vital member of the team at the Mt Druitt Learning Ground for the past 12 years, and that place offers programs for at-risk kids and their families, helping get the kids back into school and engaged in education.

In 2012 the team learnt the terrible news that their funding would be cut, and you could see right then that Debbie was not going to give up on her community. She fought hard to hold the centre together and to work to get funding back. I was pleased to work with them to secure $100,000 of federal government funding to help the service continue. I want to thank the member for Franklin for her assistance in making that a possibility.

Debbie has also helped out with the annual reconciliation walk, which is going to see its 21st walk this year on 19 May. She won the 2014 Chifley woman of the year award and was named the 2017 New South Wales female community hero. A couple of weeks ago she announced she will be moving on from Learning Ground. We were sad to learn of the news but we were happy to know she will continue to work as a big part of the 2770 community helping out. All the best to Debbie. Thank you for your contributions. You're an absolute legend!