Last night, Mayor David McMullen officially welcomed Australia’s newest citizens with a ceremony held at the City of Subiaco’s Council Chambers.
55 people were in attendance, including local members of Parliament as the City of Subiaco welcomed 21 of its newest Australian citizens and residents, who migrated from 17 countries.
Of these 21 new citizens, a family of four from Sri Lanka embraced their new country and celebrated their new citizenship together. Dilhan and Poornima Jayalath and their two daughters, Lehansa and Senulya were very excited to become Australian citizens, after living in Australia for the last eight years.
The Jayalath family first moved to Darwin in 2014 when Poornima was offered a PhD Scholarship at Charles Darwin University. Upon completion of her degree, they took the next steps to become Australian citizens as a family unit, becoming temporary residents first and gaining permanent residency together in 2020.
Poornima’s pharmaceutical career offered the family opportunities to explore other states as options to live, before they decided to settle.
The family visited Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth before they decided WA would be their home. They took an instant love to Perth and Shenton Park, in particular.
Fifteen-year-old Lehansa described Perth as so different to all the other cities they visited.
“Perth’s a laid-back city, but not as laid back as Darwin because there are things to do here.”
Dilhan says Shenton Park is perfect for his family because it is a lot calmer to Melbourne and Sydney and the weather is so different here. The family have set their roots in the City of Subiaco, with Dilhan working at a local Baptist Care Centre, his wife at a pharmaceutical company and the girls attending Shenton Park College and Rosalie Primary School.
They are very excited to become Australian citizens, and the night was made even more special by the fact that they were able to participate as a family.
“One of my favourite duties as Mayor is to preside over citizenship ceremonies. It’s a very special day for those who are getting their citizenship and it’s a very nice occasion to be a part of,” Mayor David McMullen said.
“It’s an honour to welcome Australia’s newest citizens and we’re excited to have you as a part of our community.”