Thirteen new Australians from the Hilltops celebrate citizenship

Thirteen new Australians took the citizenship pledge at Young Town Hall on Australia Day.

Each were given a certificate and gifted an Australian native plant.

Hilltops Council mayor Brian Ingram said it was the pinnacle of holding the position as a mayor to preside over the citizenship ceremony.

"I welcome you all as citizens of Australia and I congratulate you on your decision to become Australian citizens. Choosing to become a citizen is a very significant expression of your pride to be part of Australia's dynamic and diverse society," Mr Ingram said.

Becoming Australian citizens on Tuesday were Neville Conway, Samantha Harris, Samar Khoder, Kiersten Merrild, Narcisca Sheldrick, Amphavanh Soutannouvong, Danette Watson, Mike Taheri Mehr, Bella Rostam Pour, Elina Taheri Mehr, Anatolii Vodka, Olha Volkova, and Ivan Vodka.

New Australian citizens from the Hilltops local government area with mayor Brian Ingram. Photo: Peter Guthrie

New Australian citizens from the Hilltops local government area with mayor Brian Ingram. Photo: Peter Guthrie

Young's Australia Day ambassador and former Test cricketer Geoff Lawson said he became emotional during the ceremony.

"I sort of teared up a bit," Mr Lawson said.

"People were being presented with their certificates, seeing the looks on their faces, I had absolute pride for those people. Hopefully as new citizens they will do as the affirmations say. A big part of that is respecting your neighbours, respecting your community, respecting the people around you.

"Also it's bringing your cultural, whatever you have in your life, to this country and making it part of what we are. Certainly not putting it aside and forgetting about it. Australia is a multi-cultural society and it has a lot of challenges because of that, but because of people like the new citizens today it becomes a better country.

"We do live in the lucky country. It's a responsibility of everybody in the room, including the new citizens, to make sure we keep it a lucky country."

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