Media Release by Senator the Hon Amanda Vanstone

Prime Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Community and Business Partnerships – Queensland

I want to congratulate the three Queensland partnerships that have won State awards in the 2002 Prime Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Community Business Partnerships.

EnVision Support Services and the Surf Information Centre have won the Queensland state award in the Small Business category for their work to increase opportunities for Queenslanders affected by mental illness.

The partnership aims to reduce the isolation caused by mental illness, and encourages people affected to become part of their community, through a range of activities such as surf classes and aquatic sports groups. Each year more than 100 individuals access the program, increasing their self-confidence, skills and physical health, and promoting mental health throughout the community.

Cadet Training and Employment and Sunshine Coast Health Services have won the Prime Minister’s Award in the Queensland Medium Business category for their “Jobs for Health” campaign.

The two organisations have worked together on the campaign, which not only helped 3,000 people gain employment, but has also assisted with raising funds for the establishment of an Oncology unit at Nambour General Hospital.

An alliance between Indigenous Enterprise Partnerships (IEP), Balkanu Cape York Development Corporation, Westpac, The Body Shop and the Boston Consulting Group has taken out the Queensland Large Business category.

This alliance is working towards creating a private sector economy in Cape York by building the skills and capacity of the next generation of indigenous leaders, and breaking down the reliance on welfare. The partnership is making great progress in empowering individuals and families to take more responsibility for their community’s future.

This year’s awards have attracted hundreds of nominations from around the country, demonstrating that the partnership spirit remains strong across Australian communities and the business sector.

The Prime Minister’s Awards recognise the positive opportunities that such partnerships create, and their contribution to building stronger communities through shared commitment, energy and creativity.

The three Queensland partnerships will now be judged against other State and Territory winners for the National Small, Medium and Large Business Category Awards to be announced at Parliament House in Canberra on 11 December.

National winners and Special Award winners will receive $10 000 towards the extension of their community project.