Children’s author Susanne Gervay was awarded the Order of Australia for her services to Children’s Literature and has a Lifetime Literature Award for her body of works on social justice for children, including the anti-bullying series I Am Jack . As the child of migrants who were refugees, Susanne grew up with the emotional complexities of coming from a family that had been through war, migration and loss.
Susanne’s passion is empowering kids and adults with story and one way she does this is in her role as an Australia Day Ambassador, where she travels every Australia Day to a regional NSW town to speak, handing out awards while welcoming as citizens, migrants who are becoming Australian citizens.
Susanne joined us on Show Radio this week to talk about her travels as an Australia Day Ambassador including her visit to Lithgow in 2020 where she welcome as Australians citizens people who were born in Africa, Germany, Malaysia and the Philippines. She spoke about the joy and pride of people in becoming citizens and of their commitment to actively give back to the communities that welcome them, including becoming RFS volunteers.
Susanne also spoke to Show Radio about the privilege of visiting rural communities and being embraced by the sense of community that she believes is much stronger in the bush than in the city. And she tells us just how fun it can be to be welcomed into places as diverse as Lithgow and the Kimberleys!