A dream of citizenship
After waiting for three months to take part in an Australian citizenship ceremony, Pradeep, also known as Pradipkumar Shah, finally realised his dream. Along with 20 others, he officially became an Australian citizen this week during a ceremony in the Lismore City Council Chambers on Wednesday, May 5.
Since his arrival in Australia from India nearly five years ago, Pradeep has become an important part of the local community. Happiest when he is cooking Indian food, he has volunteered many hours of his time in cooking and fundraising for the Lismore Neighbourhood Centre.
Pradeep now works for a macadamia processing company and had to skip one of his nightshifts in order to make it to the 9am citizenship ceremony.
“I like this country – the landscape is beautiful and I’m very happy to be a part of it,” Pradeep said. “I love living in Lismore. I feel very supported here and the people are very friendly and helpful.
“Ozzie, ozzie ozzie – I am an Australian.”