I understand that the rising cost of living is adding stress to many household budgets in our community, which is why earlier this year I announced a $175 rebate that would be applied on household electricity bills.
This Cost of Living Rebate applied to electricity bills from August 31, however, the exact timing of this will vary depending on individual billing cycles. If your household has not yet received your Cost of Living Rebate by the end of November, I encourage you to contact your electricity retailer.
Premier’s ANZAC Prize
Despite an interruption to the initiative due to the impacts of COVID-19 delaying travel, I am proud to announce that applications for the Premier’s ANZAC Prize are open. This prize offers eight high school students and two teacher chaperones the opportunity to tour important war memorial sites in London, France and Belgium in 2023.
This allows students to engage first-hand with the ANZAC tradition, and to become ambassadors for the ANZAC legacy with Queensland communities before and after their trip. Previous recipients have spoken about their inspirational experiences and remarkable discoveries, and I’m very pleased that it is available again.
The Premier’s ANZAC Prize is open for current Year 8 to 11 state and non-state school students, and two teachers who will be selected to chaperone. This enables the winners to develop and broaden their knowledge, skills, and world perspective in a way that also connects them deeply to our nation’s history.
The winning students and teachers will research service people, and take part in community engagement and fundraising projects, enhance their intercultural awareness and confidence, along with the travel component of the prize.
Premier’s Reading Challenge
Thank you to all the students from prep to year 9 and the schools and early childhood centres who took part in this year’s Premier’s Reading Challenge. The goal is for students to read 15-20 books depending on their age and reading level.
This is one of my favourite initiatives as I have students contacting me from all over Queensland excited about the Challenge and telling me what books they are reading. When I was at school, I loved reading and I still do.
The Challenge is not only a great way to promote and improve an essential life skill, it also helps foster a love of reading which can kickstart a rewarding lifelong pastime. Students who successfully completed the Challenge will receive a Certificate of Achievement and there is a prize draw for book vouchers for schools and early childhood centres with a 100% participation rate.
Last year 168,000 children from 926 schools and 357 early learning centres read or experienced an incredible 2.39 million books which is a fantastic achievement. I look forward to seeing the results from this year.
Community Partnership Innovation Grant
As part of our government’s strategy to reduce youth crime, we have launched a $1.4 million Community Partnership Innovation Grant, to enable the government to partner with local communities on crime prevention projects focused on young people who are, or could become, repeat offenders.
Our electorate is proud to be host to the Inala Elders Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Corporation, which, delivered in partnership with Griffith University, has successfully received $199,500 as part of the Elders Cautioning Program pilot, which aims to divert young people at high risk of offending away from the youth justice system.
Elders, or respected community members, will conduct cautions based on police referrals and will work closely with mental health practitioners to provide support for young people and their families.
This will provide tailored support for young people leaving detention centres, and extra measures to help young people to get back into school, work or training.
These additional initiatives will complement existing programs. By working together, we will enhance the safety of our communities, while enabling local communities to deliver locally designed solutions.
In a further investment in community safety, this year’s State Budget provided funds to expand the Community Partnership Innovation Grants in 2022–23. A total of $3 million will be available to support additional initiatives given the strong interest in the program.
If you have questions or need assistance regarding any State Government matter, please contact me at the Inala Electorate Office on 3737 2100.