125th Government House Reception Speech
Wednesday, February 20, 2019
Your Excellency and Mr Howard, thank you for generously hosting the Newsboys Foundation’s 125th anniversary in this magnificent setting.
I acknowledge, this reception is being held on the traditional lands of the Kulin Nation and pay my respects to elders past, present and future.
I warmly welcome our guests this morning representatives of the many community organisations the Foundation supports grant recipients and members of the Newsboys Foundation Leadership Award and Newsboys Foundation Regional Music Award Alumni. I also welcome representatives from other philanthropic foundations, our friends and supporters, including family members of previous staff Dame Edith Onians and Norman Craig, and, of course, but most importantly former Newsboys Bob Urquhart, Angelo Di Iorio, and Ron Thomas. Thank you for celebrating our inspiring 125th anniversary with us.
The original Newsboys Club and subsequent Foundation has always been about supporting and developing opportunities for young people to live fulfilled lives… Today, with the ease of access through electronic multimedia it is good to remember how letterpress newspapers were once announced throughout the city by the voice of our newsboys on every corner of every major street. “Read all about it”. The voice of those newsboys can now be heard through the many young people who have been given opportunities to further their lives and strive to reach their full potential through the support of organisations funded by the Newsboys Foundation.
Young people are our future and deserve the chance to learn and grow. Our vision for young people between 11 and 21 only becomes a reality through the innovative and diverse programs implemented by the organisations we fund. Thanks, to you all, for demonstrating your belief in fostering positive relationships and wellbeing, whilst inspiring the youth of Victoria to believe in themselves and that ‘anything is possible’.
Newsboys is not only about the last 125 years, it is also about the present and the future and thanks to the efforts of two Board members, the late Nigel Morgan and current Board member John Warner, we have seen the original corpus of just over $800,000.00, in 1973, grow to over $21.6 million today. The Foundation has now made grants in excess of $17 million. The establishment of the Newsboys Foundation Trust continues to expand the growth and work of the Foundation through the generous donations received from the wider community.
I thank all members of the Board, both past and present, for their commitment to the hopes and ambitions of the Foundation. I particularly acknowledge our active, and progressive, Chairman Brind Zichy Woinarski, who is unable to be with us today. Special thanks to our dedicated CEO, Sandy Shaw. Her tireless commitment to the Foundation and interface with community and philanthropic organisations continues to promote our vision and expand public awareness. I also acknowledge the work and effort Sandy, her assistant Lata Phoenix and their team have contributed to our year of celebration and trust everyone has an opportunity to read the 125 Years booklet. I also encourage you to check our website to view seven recently uploaded videos presenting stories reflecting the Foundation’s work.
So today, we celebrate the ‘breaking news’ voices of our past present and future.
Again, Your Excellency, thank you for your support and interest.