Remarks at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Future Leaders Program event




Simon Birmingham:   

One of the- not one of, the best element of my job as Minister for Education and Training certainly isn’t running out of events like this, to get to Senate divisions in this crazy building. It’s the time I get to spend out on the ground from early learning and childhood education centres and right through to our world-class research facilities. Time spent with students, with children and with researchers, with those who at the youngest age of course, start as all children do, by not seeing things just as they are, but dreaming and imagining what they could be or can be. And the wonderful link between those children and their dreams and aspirations and the removal of limits is when you move that to the research sphere, you’re bringing together highly skilled, knowledgeable specialists and individuals who again, dream of what might be, what could be, test the realms and the boundaries of knowledge to see whether indeed they can make breakthroughs that stretch our understanding of the way things are, into a new realm of the way things could be better.


And of course, that’s true across all of the different areas of medical research, all of the different realms of other research activities that we support and are undertaking. But it’s especially true when you bring it back to a level like JDRF where you are talking about young lives, lives of young Australians who have those dreams and aspirations. And those dreams and aspirations can only be enhanced by ensuring that world-class researchers help ensure that each of the different steps their focusing on, whether that be prevention, identification, treatment, cure, lifestyle, all of those different factors are supported, to ensure that children, whether they wish to grow up to be researchers themselves or pursue anything else, aren’t inhibited by the challenges that juvenile diabetes can present.


So I’m very proud, very thrilled to be here to support this initiative, to be able to work so closely with somebody like Greg [Hunt, Minister for Health], who has championed this issue so hard, but most importantly to be able to work with such a passionate community who do such great work in terms of mobilising people to support their cause, but in terms of helping the lives of so many young Australians.