Our country has had its share of hardships, but our persistent spirit and drive towards better days and a brighter future is one of the defining aspects of the Australian character. Each year, the Australia Day Ambassador Program sees more than 150 inspirational Australians speaking about what it truly means to be Australian at events across New South Wales.
In what is always an exciting and uplifting experience for people of all ages, the Ambassador Program gives us the opportunity to meet some inspiring Australians and celebrate our national day with them.
Where it all started
Back in 1990, the Australia Day Ambassador Program began in New South Wales with just nine Ambassadors. From there it grew steadily and was introduced into Victoria in 1996, expanded into Tasmania and the ACT in 2003 and by 2005 Ambassadors were taking part in Queensland celebrations.
The program was launched nationally on January 26 in 2008 with Ambassadors participating in the Northern Territory, South Australia and Western Australia.
The success of the Australia Day Ambassador Program grows each year thanks due largely to the support and enthusiasm of our Ambassadors who volunteer their time and energy to bring an extra element of celebration to Australia Day events, as well as to their host communities.
The duties we care about
You may well be wondering what an Australia Day Ambassador does? In some ways it’s straightforward, though the activities of the Ambassadors on Australia Day are as diverse as the communities and events themselves.
If your community has a pie-eating contest, Ambassadors make excellent guest judges. They hand out Australia Day community awards, help cook a barbeque or present certificates at citizenship ceremonies. Ambassadors are also asked to give an address that captures the spirit of being Australian.
Ambassadors are both inspiring in their own achievements, and inspired by the communities they connect with. By meeting with locals they experience the diversity of life in a different part of their state or territory, getting involved with communities of all shapes and sizes to celebrate everything great about Australia.
A handful of the 2016 Australia Day Ambassadors include:
Adriano Zumbo, Celebrity Chef