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Cosgrove: Rosehill College’s new Gymnasium

16 April 2008 Speech

Cosgrove speech to officially open Rosehill College’s new Gymnasium Complex

Venue: Rosehill College, Auckland
Time: 3.30pm, 16 April 2008

Papakura Mayor Callum Penrose; Principal of Rosehill College Graeme Macann, members of staff; Rosehill College Board of Trustees Chairperson Barbara McArdle and your fellow trustees; Phil Greenbank, Trustee of the ASB Community Trust; former Papakura Mayor David Buist; teachers, parents and students of Rosehill College who are the most important people here today, as well as Rosehill College supporters; special guests; ladies and gentlemen.

It is a pleasure to be here today and I thank you for the opportunity to officially open your fantastic new $2.75 million gymnastic complex – the Rosehill Sports Centre.

I pass on the apologies of the Hon George Hawkins, Member of Parliament for Manurewa, who unfortunately is unable to attend this celebration today as intended.

While he is very sorry to have missed this special occasion, I am sure many of you will be interested to know he has been called to Parliament to progress the anti-graffiti Bill, which he is sponsoring.

The opening of your new gymnasium today is a culmination of vision, detailed planning and of lots of hard work. I congratulate your school and its supporters for their efforts in making such a wonderful facility available for both school and community use. I know that you have worked very hard through fundraising and other means to make today a reality.

This complex adds to the already superb resources that you have at Rosehill College. The new Sports Centre boasts a gymnasium, fitness centre, sports-related offices and classrooms, and it will open up a whole new world of opportunity for all those who use it. It provides a venue for a wide range of sport and activities including netball, basketball, dance, gymnastics, badminton, volleyball, weight training and indoor soccer.

It will enable interschool competitions to be hosted here, and gives your school’s hardworking Physical Education and sport staff the facilities they need to bring out the very best in you the students.

Facilities are important in the provision of sport and recreation, especially to young people and especially at the grassroots level. Centres like this provide a place to participate in sport and activities; they provide a gathering place around which social activities occur; and they can provide a sense of pride of place and belonging that can add value to team, school and community spirit.

I recently opened a sports leadership conference at which the Indian Minister of Sport, Youth and Local Government, Mani Shankar Aiyar, spoke about his determination to develop sports policy in his country - targeting those under the age of 35, who make up around 75 per cent of India’s population.

The Minister spoke of the 770 million young people in India that he is attempting to get active. His greatest challenge is that 720 million of those young people have inadequate access to proper facilities and limited opportunities to participate in sport and recreation.

So, we are fortunate that here in New Zealand we have access to a large number of facilities in our communities, which are close to where we live and where many different activities can take place.

The importance of these facilities is clear to see – for our health and fitness, our quality of life, and also for our competitiveness in the sporting arena. Rosehill College can be extremely proud of its sporting achievements. I congratulate you for continuing to provide an environment for your students which encourages personal excellence and development, and helps our young people to achieve their goals.

You have reached your goal through fundraising with the support of other contributors including a major Ministry of Education grant, private donations and support from the ASB Community Trust.

I would also like to acknowledge two people who were instrumental in getting the Rosehill Sports Centre built - the two previous Chairs of the Rosehill Board of Trustees, Peter Goldsmith and Des Searle. Peter Goldsmith has had a long history supporting the Papakura community and Des Searle contributed to the design and quality of this venue. What a fantastic effort.

I am sure that this sports centre will help your students to become even more involved in sport and recreation and will help them to become better all-round sportsmen and women.

I am sure that this facility will be a wonderful asset for your school, and the wider community, long into the future.

It now gives me great pleasure to officially declare the Rosehill Sports Centre open.


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