Mr PEARSON (Essendon) РTwo weeks ago, along with many of my colleagues, I attended a morning tea here as part of National Carers Week. In Australia there are over 2.7 million unpaid carers contributing to our nation, and here in Victoria there are over 736 000 carers who give their time, effort and compassion to care for a partner, family member or friend who needs support. The event was a small way to acknowledge and show support for the magnificent work of carers. In my electorate I am privileged to meet many carers. I hear stories of ordinary people who find themselves undertaking extraordinary amounts of labour to care for someone who means the world to them.

Carers across my electorate provide transport, support with mobility and self-care tasks, communication assistance, complete household chores and meal preparation, health care as well as vital companionship and emotional support. I want to offer my heartfelt gratitude to the many carers who give of themselves day in and day out. Their work matters. We must all work to ensure that carers receive the support they need. I read a quote this week which while originally written with children in mind also describes the role of carers everywhere. Paraphrasing revered US educator the late Rita Pierson: Every human deserves a champion, another person who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection and insists that they become the best that they can possibly be. Thank you, carers, for the champion role you play in Victoria.