One of the inspiring parts of our jobs as Members of Parliament is the opportunity to work with individuals and organisations in our electorates who are helping others in need – be it the thousands of people who volunteer their time or the dedicated professionals working in the community sector.

For many years I served on the board of the Crows Nest Community Centre, and I saw their incredible work firsthand.

I also know my part of Sydney has been something of a trailblazer in the development of great community initiatives. For example, the early development of the Mens Shed movement occurred in Lane Cove.

More recently the Waverton Hub has provided a new model for engaging communities in a way that is attracting interest across the country.

And back in 1961, what is now called Lane Cove and North Side Community Services, was a pioneer in the development of volunteer-based organisations serving the welfare of local communities.

Today the Lane Cove and North Side Community Service provide vital support for those living on the lower north shore – particularly the elderly and those with a disability.

Recently I had the opportunity to participate in the opening of the Service’s new premises in Lane Cove.  I was delighted that we were able to secure a federal grant to assist in their move.

The new premises will allow the Service to better meet the needs of the local community and I congratulate all those involved in bringing these new facilities to fruition.

More importantly, I want to record in this Parliament the gratitude of so many in our community for the dedication of its staff and volunteers – led by the Chair of the Board, John Devine and its General Manager, Gillian Batt.

Our community is stronger for all they do.