A Citizenship ceremony was held on Tuesday, July 12, in the Bega Valley Commemorative Civic Centre welcoming nine new Australian Citizens.
The citizens were presented with a Certificate of Australian Citizenship in front of their family members and friends in the Council Chambers.
The origins of our newest citizens include Denmark, Malaysia, Brazil, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Taiwan, China, England and Germany.
Local early childhood educator Alexandra Szantai-Kis said she first came to Australia in 2009 when she just fell in love.
She had just finished school in Germany and was lucky enough to get a position as an au pair in Pambula Beach for six months.
It was during this time that she met her current partner Nicolas Bowering.
Ms Szantai-Kis left Pambula Beach to travel Australia before heading back to Germany, but it wasn’t long before she decided to come back to Australia and stay.
“All the people here are great, everyone has been so welcoming and accepting. I have fit right in,” she said.
Ms Szantai-Kis currently works at Little Nippers Early Learning and Child Care Centre in Merimbula and has decided to make the area her permanent home.
“I just love it here, of all the places I visited in Australia it is still my favourite,” she said.
Ms Szantai-Kis said it was a no-brainer deciding to become an Australian citizen as it was the next logical step once she knew she wanted to stay.
“I’m very proud to be an Australian citizen.”
Bega Valley Shire Mayor, Michael Britten said he congratulated the newest citizens of the Bega Valley Shire, and on behalf of the local community he wished them well as they start their new lives as Australians.
“Australian citizenship is something to be valued and celebrated, and this week is a moment in the lives of our newest citizens to be remembered with pleasure.
“Choosing to become an Australian citizen is an important expression of loyalty and commitment to our country,” Mr Britten said.
For more information on becoming an Australian Citizen, contact the Department of Immigration and Citizenship on 131 880 or see www.immi.gov.au/
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