Literally thousands of locals across our community have told me that protecting our Daisy Hill forest is important to them. On a cold Saturday morning recently, dozens of people showed up to a meeting in the forest. That meeting made real progress on the Daisy Hill Action Plan. Longstanding members of our community, people like the Dennis family, came along and have been advocating for our forest.
For many of us who live in this community the forest is a place we take our families to visit and enjoy being outdoors. For those of us with children, the forest is a place that our local primary schools can take them to visit and learn to appreciate nature. More than that, it is a place where they learn about the responsibility we have to take care of our community and where they learn to respect community spaces. It is a place where they learn to respect those who have lived in our community for a long time. They learn to respect the decisions made by those before them to protect our Daisy Hill forest for them. For many of us who visit for recreation, like me and many of my mates who head up there regularly to mountain bike, it is a place where we can get some exercise, have some fun and sometimes push ourselves to our physical limits or beyond.
On a recent Saturday morning locals filled a marquee up at the forest to share their ideas. They talked about the strong community interest in a more coordinated approach to conservation values and recreation. What I heard from people was that this place is more than a recreation hub and more than a core koala habitat area. I know that everyone from the Rats mountain bike club—people like Andrew Fry and Darren Flood, who attended on the day—has played and continues to play a key role in making sure Daisy Hill is one of the premier trail destinations in Australia. I salute them for that work.
It has been great to share with our community that there will be an early investment into the forest. There is a $2 million budget investment in koala conservation in the region and $150,000 for trail infrastructure. I take this opportunity to recognise all of those who are partnering with us on this plan. Firstly, I thank the residents of the neighbourhood that I call home and everyone who lives in Daisy Hill, Shailer Park, Kimberley Park, Cornubia, Springwood and Rochedale South who has offered their suggestions and advice. I acknowledge the outstanding effort of those who have always stood up for our forest—people like Barry Fitzpatrick, David Keogh and everyone with the Logan and Albert Conservation Association. Finally, on behalf of our entire neighbourhood I thank Ian Witheyman and his team, who service our community as park rangers, for the work they do. I look forward to keeping our community informed of progress.