Celebrating Australia Day in Maroondah!

We’re here at Ringwood Lake Park today for our Australia Day celebrations and as part of those celebrations we have welcomed 60 new citizens. And I’m here with Mayor of Maroondah Councillor Mike Symon. Mike can you tell us a little bit more about what we’ve been doing today. Yes Ange, today we didn’t just do the citizenship we also had our Maroondah Australia Day awards. so that was the awards for the Citizen of the Year Young Citizen of the Year and the Community Event of the Year. And we’ve handed out those awards to people who have put in time and effort into our community volunteering they sacrifice their time put in their great efforts to make our community a better place. It gives me great pleasure to announce that the 2020 Australia Day Citizen of the Year award is Averil Embury. Congratulations Averil Your award and the recognition is truly deserved. Thank you very much. I’d just like to say that this is a very big surprise. Ben you are only 17 and you have achieved so much already. How does it feel to be the Young Citizen of the Year? Ahh, pretty lucky. I don’t know, there was a lot of great nominations so. Congratulations I’m thinking of what I was doing at 17 and there was definitely nothing worthy of being a Young Citizen so well done. Now you’re the under 18 National and State Hammer Throw champ Correct. You coach you volunteer and you are doing year 12 this year tell me how do you fit all of this in? Oh, I honestly don’t know, we’ll find out I guess. Is it one of those cases if you think about it too much you might fall over? Yes, it’s head first, eyes closed, can’t lose. Wonderful I have great pleasure in declaring you all Australian citizens. Congratulations. So you’re very much in to the Australian spirit? Oh yes, very much. Is this coming off today? Not today. And this will take pride of place at home? Yes. The Winter Shelter the 2020 Community Event of the Year Gitta tell me how does it feel to be representing such a great program? It’s an absolute privilege. Yeah, and it’s really exciting. I wasn’t expecting that we would win but it’s a big bonus that we have and certainly a huge thanks to all of those involved that made the program such a success. Now the program itself looks after homeless men in Maroondah and it offers support and accommodation at local churches and it’s for 20 plus, men aged 20 plus. Now you were mentioning all the people involved. How many volunteers have you got in the program? Last year we had last year was our second year of the program and we had over 300 volunteers involved, so it was massive. It was actually hard trying to give everyone a job to do. They were just so keen. What a lovely problem to have. Indeed. Fantastic.

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