Six women were officially welcomed into our community at a nationalisation ceremony on Australia Day, three from England (Jo Price, and Clair and Lily Simpson), and one each from Scotland (Eileen Gallagher), the United States (Sarah Brown) and South Africa (Catherine Davina).
Some had migrated here with their families, while others had married Australians.
The touching ceremony began with a Welcome to Country by Gerry Moore, whose mother came from Kiama. He explained the tradition of the Welcome and said that he chooses to be involved with Australia Day, rather than see it as a day of protest, because he believes we can remember the wrongs of the past but still move forward as a community.
The Australia Day Address was given by local optometrist Susan Ang-Ngo. She told the moving story of her family’s refugee experience.
It gives an insight into what it’s like to grow up as the child of refugees, and how she has been taught to give back to the community.
The ceremony ended, new and old citizens tucked into a spread of lamingtons, scones and sandwiches. Bonza!