LISMORE MP Janelle Saffin tomorrow (Tuesday, 1 December) will host NSW Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Learning Jodie Harrison at two events in Nimbin and at Australian Red Cross’s end-of-year awards presentation in Byron Bay.
Ms Saffin said she and Ms Harrison would visit Nimbin Community Preschool which should benefit from their consistent lobbying of the NSW Government to extend its free preschool program with a $120-million investment into next year.
“NSW Labor had called on the Government to continue free preschool for a further 18 months past 1 January 2021, and subsequently a couple of weeks before the State Budget they agreed it would continue for a further 12 months,” Ms Saffin said.
“Nimbin Community Preschool’s Teacher-Director Katie Pennant and her highly skilled and knowledgeable team of educators do a wonderful job of educating young children and supporting families in the Nimbin community but struggle to keep their doors open.
“Katie, who has been part of the preschool since 2017 and has worked in early childhood for 25 years, says children inspire her and make every single day magical.”
Ms Harrison said the COVID-19 pandemic has lifted the lid on the complexity of how the early childhood learning sector is structured and funded.
“This Government now has the opportunity for reform, and I am keen to listen to the experiences of educators who have continued to front up and deliver quality learning experiences to the children of NSW during this very difficult time,” Ms Harrison said.
The MPs will also present a NSW Government Community Service Award to CWA Nimbin Secretary Dr Catharina ‘Kitty’ Van Vuuren in recognition of her and her fellow branch members’ vital role in supporting their local community during the Mount Nardi bushfire a year ago.
Earlier, they will attend Australian Red Cross’s end-of-year gathering and award presentation at Byron Bay’s Cavanbah Centre, with the venue chosen as a central location for the national charity’s volunteers, many of them our Electorate of Lismore.
Volunteers will be receiving long service and distinguished service awards; awards from the NSW Premier for their service in the 2019-20 bushfire response across our region; and the 2020 NSW Resilient Australia Award (Community Category) for Tweed emergency services volunteers who rolled out the Community Resilience Teams Project in a number of villages in the Tweed Shire.
Monday, 30 November 2020.