Mr DULUK (Davenport) (15:19): I rise to recognise and acknowledge exceptional
individuals, groups and activities in my local community. We are truly spoilt in the Mitcham Hills,
which is an area with such strong community spirit represented across a range of volunteer groups
and public events. This is certainly epitomised by our CFS and SES crews, whose dedication and
commitment to our local community are extraordinary.
In the 2016-17 financial year, the Blackwood CFS attended 315 incidents, five vehicle
collisions and other emergencies. That is 315 times that members of my community stopped what
they were doing to prioritise their local community and help others. There are then the many hours
they commit to training to ensure that they are prepared when called upon to help those in their
moment of crisis. Recently, they have also gone above and beyond the role of local volunteers, by
assisting with a response to the Melbourne plastics fire. On behalf of my community, I thank the
dedicated volunteers of the Sturt CFS Group, the Blackwood Country Fire Service, Eden Hills CFS,
Cherry Gardens CFS, Belair CFS station and the Coromandel CFS station as well.
I also want to acknowledge the dedication and commitment of our local SES crews on what
was a busy weekend just gone, responding to another round of damaging storms. It was a pleasure
to attend the official opening of the unit's new shared facilities at Coromandel Valley on Saturday
with the responsible minister. The Sturt SES unit operates with approximately 40 to 50 volunteer
members, and their shared facilities are certainly a welcome improvement for the hardworking
The Mitcham Hills and surrounding areas are home to some of the most beautiful and scenic
parts of metropolitan Adelaide. We are certainly spoilt not only by living in such an area and enjoying
it daily but also by the many hardworking individuals who commit hours of their own time to care for
and preserve our local environment. The Friends of Sturt Gorge, the Friends of Belair National Park
and the Brownhill Creek Association are just some of the many very active groups in my community.
Over the past couple of months, I have had the pleasure of spending time with them.
I would like to thank Barb, Allan and Friends of Belair National Park volunteers for taking the
member for Bright and me on a guided orchid walk through the park several weeks ago. The member
for Bright and I were also fortunate to receive an invitation from Ron Bellchambers, on behalf of the
Brownhill Creek Association, to tour the Brownhill Creek Recreation Park. It was a fantastic
opportunity to learn about the work of the association and the work that the association undertakes
to preserve the park's history and environment, including the Wirraparinga Loop trail.
The Friends of Sturt Gorge also showed me around the flood mitigation dam within the park,
and I thank Bob and Albert for their time and enthusiasm for caring for the gorge. The friends would
like to see a light footbridge built along the existing dam to improve access to the whole park for
hikers and mountain bikers alike. I have written to the Minister for Sustainability, Environment and
Conservation on their behalf, and I am hopeful of receiving a favourable response in the near future.
The opportunity to spend time with these groups has been invaluable, and it has provided real insight
into their passion and commitment for our local environment, as well as into the importance of their
work. All South Australians are indeed indebted to their service.
Back in April this year, the Upper Sturt Soldiers Memorial Hall—a much-loved and popular
venue for many local events—was broken into. The stolen items included a fridge, oven warmer and
even the table-tennis nets and paddles. It may not seem like a significant crime but, to the local
residents and the community of Upper Sturt, this was a devastating crime, committed on their beloved
Soldiers Memorial Hall. The community response was swift and typical: the break-in and theft had
no sooner been reported that a fundraiser was already in the works.
The hardworking Upper Sturt Soldiers Memorial Hall committee—led by Cathy, John and
Jean Evans—organised a fantastic evening, and I was there to celebrate it with Josh Teague, the
new Liberal candidate for Heysen. Of course, we were joined by local businesses, which donated
prizes, equipment and supplies for the event. It is heartening to live in and represent such a
supportive friendly community.
Some other groups that I would like to acknowledge who have had significant events in the
community recently include the Blackwood Rotary Club, which recently hosted their 34th art and
photography show at Blackwood High School; and Gallery One in Mitcham held yet another
successful gala night, with the Mitcham Art Prize and Auction. The Blackwood Community
Recreation Centre celebrated the 10th birthday of its Strength For Life and gym fitness club, and
St John's Grammar School's Performing Arts Centre was opened two weeks ago by the iconic
Australian jazz legend, James Morrison.
Of course, I would also like to mention the Blackwood Freemasons' lodge, which recently
donated a St John Ambulance defibrillator to the Blackwood community with the support of Drake's
Foodland, which is now the custodian of that defibrillator in our com