House debates

Tuesday, 7 February 2023

Statements by Members

Building Friendships

1:40 pm

Photo of Tania LawrenceTania Lawrence (Hasluck, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

I have spoken before in this place about Building Friendships, a deeply committed community organisation that supports people with disability in Kalamunda and surrounds within the electorate of Hasluck. Building Friendships are a finalist in this year's Telstra Business Awards in the championing health category.

Building Friendships is a team of professionals working with intellectually disabled people. Their programs range from life skills, cooking classes, fitness and wellbeing to regular evening and weekend excursions. Building Friendships meets the needs of individuals within our community, with a focus on their skill development. They aim to assist their clients in learning to become as independent as they can be, all within a caring and fun environment.

In 2007, Minister Shorten stated in his first speech that he believed:

… the challenge for government is not to fit people with disabilities around programs but for programs to fit the lives, needs and ambitions of people with disabilities.

That is what the minister continues to strive to do with the NDIS, and it is what Building Friendships does every day in Kalamunda for their community.

Dianne Owen and the team at Building Friendships are a great example of enthusiasm, resilience and dogged endeavour. All the best to the worthy finalists on 14 February, and especially to Building Friendships.