Parliament: Other Speeches

Reclink Australia

Adjourned debate on motion of Hon. T.A. Franks:

That this council—

  1. Recognises that Reclink Australia has been outstanding in delivering sport, recreation and arts participation opportunities to some of the community’s most vulnerable and isolated people, at risk youth and those experiencing disadvantage, including mental illness, disability, homelessness, alcohol and other drug issues and social and economic hardship; and
  2. Applauds the inaugural Adelaide Reclink Community Cup fundraising football match between players from community and mainstream media (the Adelaide Anchors) and local musicians (the Rockatoos) held on 16 August 2015.

The Hon. K.L. VINCENT: The opportunity to engage with others through recreation and play is something that evidence supports for physical and mental health, and yet it is something which is out of reach for too many people in our community due to particular circumstances. Reclink is out and about actively taking action on this issue and closing that gap, working with people who are disengaged and isolated through a broad range of enjoyable activities. Seeing people, whatever their experience or circumstances, as people first is a way of decreasing stigma, increasing confidence and giving the sense of connection to community that is a deep human need.

I know that people with disabilities are, I suppose you could argue, over-represented in the client base of Reclink and the opportunities that are available include artistic pursuits, drumming, circus skills and perhaps one of my closest own interests, I should note, tours of the Haigh’s factory. As noted in this motion, there are also sporting opportunities, in particular the Adelaide Reclink Community Cup which the Hon. Ms Franks and the Hon. Mr Maher talked about at length in their contributions.

It certainly sounds like a fantastic involvement. I think it is well known and well accepted that I am not a particularly sporty person myself but you never know, that might change. I will flag with the Hon. Ms Franks that I know where to get some sports wheelchairs, some racing wheelchairs, if required for a future cup. I would love to see if we could get that happening.

I add Dignity for Disability’s congratulations for all involved in that tournament. I would love to see what we could do in the future maybe to get even more participants which may or may not include me. I certainly do not want to go on the record as promising anything until I know a bit more as to what I am up for. I might need to go to the gym a few more times before I am ready for that. With those few words, Dignity for Disability thanks the Hon. Ms Franks for bringing this organisation to the attention of the council and also acknowledges the impassioned involvement of the Hon. Mr Maher, if his contribution was anything to go by. I certainly indicate our strong support for the motion.