Austrailia Day

What is Austrailia Day and how we celebrate it

Why we celebrate australia day

Australia Day is the official national day of Australia. Celebrated annually on 26 January, it marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet of British Ships at Port Jackson, New South Wales, and rising of the Flag of Great Britain at that site by Governor Arthur Phillip. In contemporary Australia, celebrations reflect the diverse society and landscape of the nation, and are marked by community and family events, reflections on Australian history, official community awards, and citizenship ceremonies welcoming new immigrants into the Australian community.

When

Australia Day is on January 26 and commemorates the establishment of the first European settlement at Port Jackson, now part of Sydney, in 1788. It is an opportunity for Australians to come together to celebrate their country and culture. There are reflections on the achievements of the nation and explorations of way to make the country even better in the future.

The Day





On Australia Day, over half of the nation’s population of 21 million attend either an organised community event, or get together with family and friends with the intention of celebrating our national day. Many more spend the public holiday relaxing with family and friends.

Yet Australia Day is much more than barbeques and fireworks. It is more than another public holiday. It is more than the pride and excitement of new citizens who call themselves Australian for the first time on 26 January after being conferred citizenship.

At its core, Australia Day is a day driven by communities, and the celebrations held in each town, suburb or city – unified by the celebration of what’s great about Australia and being Australian – are the foundation of its ongoing success.



On Australia Day, over half of the nation’s population of 21 million attend either an organised community event, or get together with family and friends with the intention of celebrating our national day. Many more spend the public holiday relaxing with family and friends.

Yet Australia Day is much more than barbeques and fireworks. It is more than another public holiday. It is more than the pride and excitement of new citizens who call themselves Australian for the first time on 26 January after being conferred citizenship.

At its core, Australia Day is a day driven by communities, and the celebrations held in each town, suburb or city – unified by the celebration of what’s great about Australia and being Australian – are the foundation of its ongoing success.

Significance

The Bicentenary gave the National Australia Day Council (NADC) a great boost, with bicentennial community committees across the country converting to Australia Day committees where they did not already exist. In 1990 the Council became an incorporated public company. Its board, appointed from the community by the federal government, was expected to adopt 'a more entrepreneurial approach'. The government hoped that the corporate sector's financial contribution to Australia Day would eventually match its own.37


Cooperation between the NADC and the states and territories in planning and implementing Australia Day programs proved to be a constant challenge. The Council, after consultation with its forum, provided the national focus; the state and territory councils were the 'arms and legs' implementing it. But criticism that the Bicentenary had been a NSW rather than national celebration, led some to say that the Australian of the Year Award presentations should not always be in Sydney. Although an attempt in 1992 to move the ceremony to Melbourne failed, in 1994 the presentations began to alternate between Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Brisbane. The same year the states and territories made permanent their concession of 1988: a holiday on 26 January, in place of the long weekend. The NADC, after years of campaigning for the change, had reason to exclaim in its annual report: 'One nation - one day - Australia's Day!

The History

The tradition of having Australia Day as a national holiday on 26 January is a recent one. Not until 1935 did all the Australian states and territories use that name to mark that date. Not until 1994 did they begin to celebrate Australia Day consistently as a public holiday on that date.

By Nahian