In a heart-warming ceremony Townsville City Council proudly welcomed 30 remarkable individuals as new Australian citizens on Wednesday, July 26 at Townsville Stadium.
Mayor Jenny Hill lead the citizenship proceedings by celebrating the various backgrounds of the attendees, with representatives from 13 countries of origin embracing their new Australian identity.
The 30 new citizens came from around the world, including Central African Republic, India, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, South Africa, the United States of America, the United Kingdom, and Zambia.
Cr Hill expressed her delight in participating in these momentous ceremonies.
“We eagerly await these occasions, as they are truly special,” she said. “Townsville is a city that cherishes its diverse and dynamic community, and Council is proud to foster an environment where every resident feels welcomed and valued. These citizenship ceremonies play a vital role in solidifying that bond. Townsville’s multicultural community is a source of immense pride, contributing to the city’s reputation as a wonderful place to live. It is a city where a sense of belonging is paramount, and residents, irrespective of their origins, come together to create a vibrant tapestry of culture and heritage.”
During the ceremony, the new citizens had the opportunity to hear the Minister’s message from the Department of Home Affairs before being warmly welcomed by the Mayor and taking their heartfelt citizenship pledge.
They then united to sing the National Anthem. Each new citizen then received their citizenship certificates, Australian flags, and a native plant from the Mayor and councillors, symbolising the connection to the new homeland.
Following the ceremony, an afternoon tea allowed the residents to interact with Cr Hill, capturing the moment through photographs with family and friends.
The Zaldua family, originally from the Philippines, were among the new citizens on the day, with Immanuel and Noridel and their children Kate and Ziron delighted to be a part of this special occasion and become fully-fledged Australians.
“We moved over to Townsville in 2017 and we love living here and being part of the community. We had some friends who lived here, and they really enjoyed it, so we did the same and it’s been fantastic for our family. The city is great, the weather is always nice and tropical, and we love calling Townsville home. Our children love their schools, my daughter plays touch footy and my son and her are both learning musical instruments, so we are all very happy here,” Mr Zaldua said.
Council proudly supports diversity and inclusion in the community through events, such as Citizenship Ceremonies, activities and programs. Council recognises everyone’s diverse ability, welcomes multicultural diversity, supports youth and elderly and values Indigenous communities.
For more information on citizenship ceremonies, go to Council’s Citizenship Ceremonies page.