Today I want to focus on young high achievers I’ve met recently from my electorate of Bonner.

I recently had the pleasure of presenting young sports stars from my electorate with their Local Sporting Champions awards. The Local Sporting Champions program is an Australian Government initiative that provides $500 grants to young sportsmen and women aged 12 to 18 to help them cover the costs of attending state, national, and international sports championships.

There were 35 successful applicants from Bonner for the latest Local Sporting Champions round. Five of these sports stars attended my presentation ceremony last week:

• Ella O’Grady from Wynnum North, representing Metropolitan East School at the Football State Championships. Ella one day hopes to play for the Matildas;

• Luisa Gauci from Chandler, representing Queensland at the Youth Women’s Nationals baseball championship. Luisa is the first Brisbane girl to compete in the national Kookaburras team, and was recently in Korea representing Australia;

• Mitchell Torrens from Manly West, participating at the BMX QLD State Championships at the junior elite level;

• Ethan Bennetts from Carindale, representing Queensland Athletics at the Australian Athletics Championships. Ethan is a gold medallist in the hammer throw event and intends to represent Australia at the Olympics one day;

• Erin Hopgood from Wynnum West, representing Redlands City Gym Sports at the TRP State Age Championships.

The Government is proud to support our talented young sports stars and help them achieve their sporting dreams. Good luck to our Local Sporting Champions at their upcoming championships! I encourage other eligible sportsmen and women in Bonner to apply online.

I also recently got to meet some outstanding language students from Mansfield State High School. Eight of these students have received scholarships to travel to Kobe, Japan this month. I also wished bon voyage to French language students heading off to Rouen on exchange. Congratulations to these excellent students, I was happy to present them with Aussie flags and other goodies they can take with them on their trip.

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