Anthony Byrne MP honours 40 Australia Day Award recipients

Jan 26, 2011

Anthony Byrne MP, Federal Member for Holt honoured 35 outstanding individuals and 5 local organisations for their contribution to our community on Australia Day.

 The 2011 Holt Australia Day Awards were presented at the Day of Nations celebrations in Hampton Park and at the Actively Diverse celebrations in Doveton, with a large crowd of families and friends turning out to support the recipients.

 “Australia Day provides a special opportunity to recognise our unsung heroes, many of whom have made substantial contributions to our community often in an understated way,” said Anthony Byrne MP.

The 2011 Holt Australia Day Awards were also an opportunity to recognise the invaluable efforts of Anthony Bickham of Endeavour Hills, who bravely rushed into a burning house to help a woman and her daughter escape safely.  Anthony’s quick actions have earned high praise and he is now seen by many people to be a local hero.

Also amongst the Award Recipients was Gerry Ryan OAM, the founder of Jayco Corporation in Australia, and founding Chairman of the Visy Cares Centre in Dandenong, which continues to provide an integrated and comprehensive range of youth support services in Melbourne’s rapidly expanding Outer South East Region.

“I congratulate all those receiving a Holt Australia Day Award for their exemplary community spirit, generous contributions and endless hours of volunteer work making our community a better and safer place to live."

Award Recipients – Hampton Park

· Anne Haylock

· Barbara Fay Maggs & Anthony David Jenner

· Bill Bradshaw

· Cathy Smith

· Charmaine Sime

· Cranbourne & Hampton Park Greek Senior Citizens Club

· Erica Maliki

· Endeavour Industries

· Gerry Ryan

· Gwenda Clough

· Joseph Bertram Dias

· Larraine Calder

· Warren Calder

· Madison Pritchett

· Mike Herbert

· Monica Deayton

· Patricia Kimtia

· Peter Cutting

· St Vincent De Paul – Berwick Soup Van

· Wendy Saunders

Award Recipients – Doveton

· Anthony Bickham

· Benjamin Hofmann

· Bob Coldwell

· Bruce Gower

· Dave Canham

· David Boyde

· Faizullah Aschna

· Gail Bell

· Geoffrey Lacey

· Jan Hudson

· Karyan Ng

· Kevin Clark

· Kumaran Shanmugasamy

· Laurise Sonnberger

· Lynda Beddoe

· Radoslav Gudelj

· Shirley Seskis

· Timor Ethnic Chinese Community Victoria

· VICSES Narre Warren Unit Volunteers

$600,000 Boost for First Health Medical Centre, Hampton Park

Dec 6, 2010

Patients can expect to see big changes at First Health Medical Centre, Hampton Park, thanks to the clinic’s success in receiving $500,000 under the Federal Government’s ‘Primary Care Infrastructure grants’.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Anthony Byrne, Federal member for Holt was pleased to announce that under this program, the Centre will be extended, which will mean that doctors there can expand the services they offer to the community. New treatment and training rooms will be built and, with these facilities, access to new health professionals such as diabetes educators, chiropractors, exercise physiologists and more.

Dr Alan Lim, of First Health Medical Centre said that “the extension will allow the Centre to develop an approach for integrated medical management of patient with chronic and complicated diseases.”

First Health Medical Centre has also received $100,000 under the General Practice After-Hours Grants Program.  This is a two year grant to assist the Centre with after-hours operating costs.  This is part of the Government’s commitment to reduce pressure on hospital emergency departments.

Dr Alan Lim from First Health Medical Centre welcomed the funding and said that “it will enable the Centre to work more closely with allied health workers under the same roof.  In addition, it will also help us to develop better teaching facilities for the training of younger doctors  to serve in this community.

“This is great news in our community, as it will mean patients will soon be able to access reliable, longer after hour and a wider range of services from local medical Centres,” said Anthony Byrne.

Casey Family Practice in Narre Warren and Amstel Medical Centre in Cranbourne will also each receive $150,000 under the Primary Care Infrastructure Grants.

Anthony Byrne is calling for 2011 Holt Australia Day Award nominations

Dec 2, 2010


Federal Member for Holt, Anthony Byrne is calling for community, sporting and service organisations and members of the public to nominate individuals for the Holt Australia Day Award, to be presented on Australia Day 2011.

Anthony recently met with 2009 Holt Australia Day Award recipient Carlos Loyola.  The same day it was announced that he had won the Order of Australia Medal for his service to disability sport, particularly at the Doveton Special Soccer School.  

“Carlos is a great example of how one can make a profound difference in the lives of others less fortunate and through his coaching and mentoring has helped the confidence and courage of countless participants of Doveton Special Soccer School.”  Anthony Byrne said.

Nominations will be accepted online at

For those who prefer to submit the nomination by email, fax or mail, they can contact the Electorate Office on 9796 7533.

Please note the criteria for nomination: 

• The nominee must have made a significant contribution in a voluntary or philanthropic capacity
• The nominee must live in the electorate of Holt, or if not, be working with an organisation/association that is based in or services the electorate of Holt 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Nominations will be considered by a committee of Holt-based community representatives.

 “Australia Day is a great day to publicly recognise the significant efforts of individuals whose work enhances community relations, enriches our cultural and sporting lives and to recognise those who put their lives and livelihoods on the line to protect our communities in the case of emergency services.  It is an honour to extend a thankyou to these individuals on behalf of the community on Australia Day.” 
Holt Australia Day Award recipients come from various suburbs across the electorate including: Berwick; Cranbourne; Cranbourne East; Cranbourne North; Dandenong; Doveton; Endeavour Hills; Fountain Gate; Hampton Park; Lynbrook; and Narre Warren South.

Anthony Byrne has spoken in Parliament about the need for the Hallam Valley Trade Training and Skills Centre in Holt

Nov 23, 2010

Tonight, I will discuss a great initiative in my electorate of Holt, in the heart of the growth corridor in the southeastern suburbs. My electorate is often associated with the Fountain Gate shopping centre and a TV series with a wellknown couple who used to shop there. But it is so much more.

My electorate is the heart of one of the most dynamic growth belts in Australia. Interestingly, some 22 per cent of people in Holt are employed in the manufacturing industry, the highest proportion of any electorate in the country. In total, 44 per cent of workers in my electorate are employed as technicians, tradespeople, machinery operators, drivers and labourers. These people are good working people. They make our country tick and they contribute to our national prosperity.

The electorate is also one of the most heavily mortgaged in the country, with some 55 per cent of houses being owner occupied. My electorate lies, as the member for La Trobe knows, within the City of Casey—a council area the current population of which is approximately 246,000 people. At present, about 55 families, or 146 people, shift into the City of Casey each week. By 2021, the population of the City of Casey will be 320,000 and, by 2036, it is projected to be 450,000. Soon, the City of Casey is going to be larger than our nation’s capital city.

There will be enormous demands on all levels of government to accommodate that growth and we must all work together, whatever our political hue, to plan and to provide the necessary infrastructure and facilities for those who move to our area to make it their home and there to create their futures and the futures of their children.

We have been moving and accommodating that growth through our Building the Education Revolution and through the recent—particularly during the height of the global financial crisis—grants of well over $10 million to the Casey council to assist with infrastructure development and job creation. I know that this money has been well spent and has been appreciated by the council in its expenditure on the substantial Casey Fields development and on roadworks, sporting facilities, resurfacing and renovation. 

One astonishing fact is that there are 54,100 five- to 19-year-olds in the City of Casey. Many of these children will proceed to university. Many others will proceed to embark on a trade training course and achieve a much valued trade qualification.

On this theme, one of my proudest moments as a member of parliament was when the then opposition leader, Kevin Rudd, articulated, during the 2007 election campaign, that a trade qualification was the equivalent of a university degree. This meant a huge amount to the many tradies in my electorate and to the many kids who aspire to get a trade. I suspect that one element that influenced the former Prime Minister was a visit he made to the then Eummemerring Secondary School Hallam campus in 2007, where he saw first hand the transformative power of targeted trades programs staffed by visionary teachers and innovators like Keith Pimblett and Tom Halloran. Tom had forgone a large salary as a successful tradesman to teach at the school. Keith had had a very successful career in business before moving into teaching. The results of their combined efforts were outstanding, both in school results and in apprenticeships and job opportunities provided.

The former Prime Minister’s statement and what I have seen and observed provided a significant counterpoint to the long-held sentiments of those who derided the good working men and women who pursued trades in the eighties and the nineties. We know that, without the traditional trades and emerging trades, we just could not function as a community. We celebrate those who pursue a trades career and we celebrate their contribution to our community.

One way of ensuring that continues was a commitment made by the then Rudd and now Gillard government to the construction of a trade training centre at Eummemerring. I recently had the pleasure of turning the first sod on the first amalgamated trade training centre being constructed in my electorate.

The federal government has committed $10.4 million to the Hallam Valley Trade Training and Skills Hub. This project is a cross-sectoral trade training centre that aims to provide job-ready training in traditional and emerging trades for senior school students at Hallam Senior Secondary College,  Fountain Gate Secondary College, Gleneagles Secondary College, Endeavour Hills Secondary College, Hampton Park Secondary College, Narre Warren South P-12 College and St. Johns Regional College.

This hub has particular relevance given its proximity to major manufacturing centres, the hubs, employers like Bombardier and Jayco and groups like Apprenticeships Group Australia. This is the culmination of the vision of people like Keith Pimblett and Tom Halloran. We are providing the facilities needed for the future of our community. I had great pride in turning that sod, because I know the Hallam Valley Trade Training and Skills Hub is going to provide the future opportunities that tradies in our region need.

Anthony Byrne and Luke Donnellan turn the first sod on the site of the Hallam Valley Trade Training and Skills Centre

Nov 15, 2010

Construction has begun on the Hallam Valley Trade Training and Skills Hub, which will benefit seven local schools.

Federal Labor has committed $10.4 million to this project which is part of the Labor Government’s economic plan, to provide world-class job ready training for our young secondary students across the region in traditional and emerging trades.

The Hallam Valley Trade Training and Skills Hub is a cross‐sectoral Trade Training Centre, that aims to provide high level training in traditional and emerging trades for senior school students at Hallam Senior Secondary College, Fountain Gate Secondary College, Gleneagles Secondary College, Endeavour Hills Secondary College, Hampton Park Secondary College, Narre Warren South P-12 College and St. Johns Regional College.

Participants in the program will have the opportunity to experience a wide variety of vocational skills training while at the same time continue their studies for entry to University or higher education at their local secondary colleges. 

Anthony Byrne MP said that “We know that our long term prosperity is dependant on investing in a world-class training and education system.  That’s why the Government has made record investments in apprentices and training, including

• $200 Million in a critical skills investment fund to deliver skills in critical need; and
• $490 Million to improve the basic language, literacy and numeracy skills of working Australians so that they can go on to access the training they need

State Member for Narre Warren North, Luke Donnellan said that “developing a highly skilled and educated work force by providing training in areas of identified opportunites will ensure that we meet the challenges of the future.”

“Our kids here in Holt deserve the best quality education to give them the best start in life,” said Anthony Byrne MP.

Remembering fallen Australians

Nov 11, 2010


Federal Member for Holt, Anthony Byrne today laid a wreath at the Remembrance Day commemoration service at the Cranbourne Cenotaph.

Remembrance or Armistice Day commemorates the end of World War One at 11am, 11 November 1918.

Mr Byrne said it was an opportunity to honour those who served and the more than 102,000 men and women who lost their lives in the service of our country.

The commemoration service at Cranbourne included members of various local community and sporting organisations.

“It was great to see so many local schools involved with large numbers of students laying wreaths,” Mr Byrne said.

“It is particularly important that young Australians are involved in ceremonies that honour the sacrifice of our servicemen and women, both past and present. 

 “Since 1919 Australia has honoured our servicemen and women with a minute’s silence at 11am on 11 November.

“Today, the nation fell silent once again to remember those who lost their lives in defence of our nation.

Anthony Byrne has spoken in Parliament of great local success stories from Doveton

Oct 18, 2010

I rise tonight to pay tribute to two local success stories from Doveton, a great suburb in my electorate. One is an individual who embodies what it means to be a resident of Doveton. Another is a group of people who embody the spirit of Doveton and community through an event which brings thousands of community members together. First of all I want to acknowledge in this place the work of Heather Weston, a Dovetonite through and through who, sadly, passed away in June of this year but whose legacy acts as an inspiration as a battler who overcame the odds and whose work influenced countless individuals who crossed her path in her years with the Doveton Neighbourhood House.

Heather was born in Ballarat and moved to Doveton in the 1980s. Almost immediately she became involved with the Doveton Neighbourhood House, where she would maintain an involvement for the 24 years that followed. The Doveton Neighbourhood House was originally opened in 1976 and offers pre-accredited adult education classes, social support, after-school activities and many other services. Doveton Neighbourhood House acts as an essential community hub that provides a place for members of the local community to get together to meet new friends and to further build on what is a unique, deeply connected community.

When Heather became involved with the Doveton Neighbourhood House she was, in her words, illiterate and, by her own words, often felt that she was good at nothing. Not to be overcome by this, Heather quickly enrolled in basic English reading and writing courses at Doveton Neighbourhood House, forming an affinity with the centre that would see her spend 15 years on its committee, holding the positions of assistant to the treasurer, vice-president, secretary and president. In fact, Heather spent a total of three years as the centre’s president. These are significant achievements in themselves, but Heather’s true achievement—and, indeed, where her passion lay—was in inspiring and driving others. She used her success against her plight to empower others in the community to emulate her achievements.

Jodie Berry from the Doveton Neighbourhood Learning Centre where the Neighbourhood House now operates described Heather as a person who ‘represented what community houses can do in the way of communicating and strengthening the community’. Brian Oates, who knew Heather from his time with the City of Casey, including as mayor, described her as someone who will be remembered for her ‘giving nature, voluntary involvement in the community and wonderful sense of humour’. Her achievements were recognised in 2008 when she received a Holt Australia Day Award for her long-running commitment to the Doveton Neighbourhood House. Heather Weston, unfortunately, lost her battle with leukaemia this year. She was aged 53.

I would also like to pay tribute to another outstanding success story. The annual Doveton Show was held on Sunday, 19 September at Myuna Farm in Doveton. Mr Speaker, you should go there at some stage. It is held each year at the same time as the Royal Melbourne Show. The Doveton Show has been an exceptionally successful community driven initiative, attracting tens of thousands of attendees over the years, showcasing the Doveton-Eumemmerring community and providing a low-cost alternative to the Melbourne Show, which costs roughly $60 for a family ticket. You can enter the Doveton show merely by supplying a gold coin donation. The show is organised and run by an events committee that is made up of a group of volunteers who work together to create the Doveton Show each year.

In its inaugural year of 2005, event organisers and the founding committee—not surprisingly including Heather Weston and her brother Neil Tiley—were confident of attracting at least 1,000 people and were hopeful of perhaps 2,000 people. Hopes were exceeded, with over 5,000 people flocking to Myuna Farm from places as far away as Nyora and Keilor. This year the event attracted a record 12,000 people, which is an exceptional turnout for a locally organised event, especially one run by volunteers. It shows how the event has become increasingly popular with locals and people from all over the state. There is something for everyone at this event, including amusement rides, an animal nursery, Indigenous and multicultural performances, arts and crafts competitions, vintage cars and stalls offering toys, plants, emergency service information and much more. I have heard stall holders, vendors and ride operators reserving places for next year and commenting on how much they loved being part of this unique event. This event is a great tribute to the work of the Doveton and Eumemmerring Neighbourhood Renewal and the organising committee, which has helped create a more prosperous, safe and healthy community. It is a testament to what can be achieved through local networks and the community at large in this working-class suburb of Doveton. In particular it is a home-grown success and something that I am very proud of.

Programs like the Doveton and Eumemmerring Neighbourhood Renewal, centres like the Doveton Neighbourhood House and volunteers like Heather Weston are vital elements, vital people that make the community tick. They make the community work. I would like to say tonight that I remember Heather Weston incredibly well. I hope that in some way, shape or form this statement tonight acknowledges her substantial contribution to the Doveton community.

Anthony Byrne MP opens new multipurpose hall and classrooms at St Paul Apostle South School

Oct 10, 2010

The Hon Anthony Byrne MP attended the official opening of the new multipurpose hall and classrooms at St Paul Apostle South School in Endeavour Hills, built as part of the Australian Government’s Building the Education Revolution (BER).

St Paul Apostle South School received $2.125 million under the National School Pride (NSP) program and Primary Schools for the 21st Century (P21) elements of the BER.

The Hon Anthony Byrne MP congratulated St Paul Apostle South School on their new facilities and spoke of the benefit to both the school and local community.

‘It has been fantastic to see the principal, school staff, parents and tradespeople working together to deliver these important projects. Now that they are completed, teachers and students in our local schools will be teaching and learning in 21st Century facilities that they so richly deserve.’

‘I am delighted to celebrate the opening of this multipurpose hall and to witness first hand, the impact this has had on this school and the broader community.

‘I am also delighted to announce that this particular project supported the employment of over a hundred workers from the building and construction industry. This is what we strived to achieve – this is the essence of the Economic Stimulus Plan,’ Anthony Byrne MP said.

Further information about this project and all schools funded under the BER is available at or at:


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