Australia Day in Camden to look a little different this year

Australia Day in Camden is going to look a little different this year.

There won't be a street parade or an annual street fair due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, however, locals can still celebrate the national day at home.

This year Camden Council will offer a range of online activities for locals to enjoy.

Camden mayor Theresa Fedeli said the online program offered residents a chance to celebrate safely from the comfort of their own homes.

"While we can't be together for Australia Day in 2021, we'll have loads of fun online events and activities to celebrate our nation," Cr Fedeli said.

"Australia is such a diverse nation with beautiful natural landscapes with many of those right in our backyard here in Camden, so this is the exact reason we should continue to celebrate through this Covid-19 pandemic."

Paralympian George Tonna is Camden's Australia Day 2021 ambassador.

The 46-year-old, who has Cerebral Palsy, has an impressive line-up of achievements.

He represented Australia at the 2000 Paralympic Games, as vice-captain of the Cerebral Palsy football squad and helped lead his team to be the first Australian football team in history to win a game in the Paralympics, beating Holland 2-1.

Mr Tonna also formed the NSW Physical Disability Rugby League Association (NSW PDRLA) in 2010, which gave players with disability a chance to get out there and enjoy the sport.

He said he was honoured to be named Camden's Australia Day Ambassador for 2021 and was looking forward to speaking to residents.

"I've been blessed to be living in Australia with a disability and am grateful for the opportunities that Australia has given me," Mr Tonna said.

"I am quite honoured to be in a list alongside some very great names in Australia's history and it means a lot for people with a disability.

"It really shows that if you put your mind to something, anything is possible. I have been able to work overseas in America, Russia and England and start four sporting associations.

"Most recently I started Heroes with Ability where we take rugby league into the school system for people of all abilities. Over 20 to 30 years I have been able to help so many people with so many things and I am proud of that and hope to continue doing it into the future."

Cr Theresa Fedeli said it was an honour to welcome George to Camden.

"I am truly blown away by George - his can-do attitude, his achievements and his zest for life. It is so inspiring," Cr Fedeli said.

"To me, this is a day where we celebrate what it means to be Australian and George completely encompasses that. As a nation, we have seen some really dark times in the last 12 months.

"But the way we pull together, help each other out, hold on to hope and just solider on is what makes Australians great.

"Being Australian is a privilege I am thankful for every day."

Residents can enjoy the following activities this year:

  • Camden Australia Day award winners announced via social media
  • George's special online address
  • The Camden Australia Day playlist, where residents are invited to send a song in to be included
  • An online Cork Hat Making workshop
  • The #camdenflagsout campaign, where residents are encouraged to place an Australian flag out on their windows, letterboxes or cars and post a photo to social media using the hashtag
  • A celebration of the Australia Day Parade through the decades, with a series of throwback photos on Council's social media.

Details: camden.nsw.gov.au.

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