Mr ALEXANDER (Bennelong) (13:44): I would like to inform the house of another inspiring young woman from Bennelong. Kate Darmody of Denistone has been selected by ClubsNSW as the winner of this year’s Kokoda Youth Leadership Challenge Scholarship, and she will be walking the Kokoda Track later this year.
Kate has been working in rehabilitation and therapy in the widely-respected brain unit at Bennelong’s Royal Rehab centre. She says that the strength and determination that she has learnt in this role will be essential in meeting the challenges of this hike. She has also trained in art and is hopeful of creating a meaningful body of work based on her experiences in this emotionally charged environment.
Hiking the Kokoda Track has been a long-time ambition of Kate’s, particularly as she has family members who have served in the ADF. This scholarship is awarded annually by ClubsNSW and gives young people a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to gain an understanding of what life was like for Australian soldiers during World War II and to bring this knowledge back to their communities.
The skills and resilience Kate has learnt in her work at Royal Rehab will stand her in good stead throughout this challenge. I would like to wish her all the best and I congratulate Royal Rehab, ClubsNSW and the RSL for celebrating such a fine young advocate.