Michael Danby MHR

Tel: (03) 9534 8126
Fax: (03) 9534 1575

117 Fitzroy Street
St Kilda VIC 3182

PO Box 2086
St Kilda West 3182

ADJOURNMENT: Education: Scholarships
Mr DANBY (Melbourne Ports) (7.43 p.m.) —
Mr Speaker, firstly, I would like to congratulate the General Sir John Monash Foundation on the function which I attended together with you and the Prime Minister at Anzac Hall. In a non-partisan way, I also congratulate the federal government and also the people from Australian business who are going to establish a foundation that will have major academic scholarships that will eventually become the equivalent of the Rhodes scholarship or the Fullbright. It is wonderful that a person of such great stature for Australia—our greatest general and a person who did for Australia in peacetime what he did for Australia in wartime—will be the focus of international academics and students when they see the Monash scholarship become the equivalent of the Rhodes and the Fullbright. I particularly congratulate people in private industry, whether it is the Pratt Foundation, Arthur Hedwick's, Monash University or the Gandel Charitable Trust, for putting their money behind the federal government's $5 million.

Mr Speaker, on Monday I was telling you about the 90th anniversary of the Kadimah organisation in my electorate. The Kadimah is famous not just for being a library and a cultural institution but also as the place from where the Hazomir Choir and the very famous Dovid Herman Theatre, which was named after the famous Vilno Troupe, were established. The Dovid Herman Teatre has been producing plays in Yiddish in Melbourne and Elsternwick for over 40 years. It is also the place where the famous Kadimah literary journal, Di Melburne Bletter, has been published by Moishe Ajzenbud for a similar amount of time.

The Kadimah moved from Carlton in the 1950s and 1960s as the Jewish community moved from that area to St Kilda and Elwood. It is now situated in my electorate in Elsternwick in the Leo Fink Hall, which was named after the famous philanthropist behind the Classic Cinema. I have a great deal of fun going there sometimes on Wednesday lunchtimes to the Wednesday Club, where elderly citizens from that tradition meet. It is a great organisation. It has sponsored things like the One Voice—Concert in the Park in Caulfield Park. It is a source of great pleasure to me that I have been able to give elderly citizens awards to a couple of the people there. One was to a dynamic actress in her nineties and the other was to Mr Yosl Winkler, whose activities on behalf of the organisation have gone on for more than 50 years.

Alex Dafner has written a very wonderful history of this organisation. I am indebted to him for the role that he has played in making this parliament understand the role that the Kadimah have had in fulfilling the vital culture and social needs of the Yiddish speaking migrant community and the role that they have played in enriching Australian society in particular. As their tradition says, `un biz 120 un nokh vayter', which means, `may it live to 120 and then some'. I hope the organisation goes well beyond 120 years.

Tonight I will also talk about another person whom I am very proud of in my electorate, Crystal Elliott. After facing severe drug addition, being on amphetamines, LSD and ecstasy, attempting suicide and being involved in physically and emotionally abusive relationships, she has rehabilitated herself and has published a wonderful book, Ever Wondered ... if your child would use drugs? Crystal has decided that it is her role to make sure that other parents do not have to go through the kinds of agonies that her parents did, by providing a book that has simple questions and answers that parents can understand on this very complicated issue of drugs. It has just been published and has been written up in my local press. It will be available on the Internet. The address is: www.ever-wondered.com. I strongly recommend it to parents all around Australia as a `how to' book to look after your children and to prevent them going on drugs.


Authorised by Michael Danby 117 Fitzroy Street St Kilda VIC 3182