Australia Day bonus for cafe, sport youth

THE Albury Council says its youth organisations will have the opportunity to receive guidance and inspiration from Father Chris Riley during his visit as the city’s Australia Day ambassador.

The council has asked the Youth Off the Streets founder to work with the Retro Cafe Youth Council and at the midnight basketball program at the Lauren Jackson Sports Centre in East Albury.

It wants him to also visit other organisations.

The council’s events team leader Ros Walls also said she hoped Father Riley would get something out of his visit.

“We are really placing an importance on engaging the ambassador with our community, particularly with those groups that he has expertise and experience with,” Mrs Walls said.

“And we want Father Riley to be able to take something away from his experience,”

Father Riley began working with homeless youth in 1990, operating a food van for youth in Kings Cross.

He has since built that into a large-scale organisation that provides accredited high schools and out of home care.

He will speak at the Noreuil Park on Australia Day at 10.30am and help welcome 15 new Australian citizens.

Several other centres will also have prominent guests at their Australia Day celebrations.

Gardener and former television host Don Burke, OAM, will appear at the Walbundrie Recreation Ground from 8am and the Murray Shire will host former Getaway presenter Catriona Rowntree.

Musicians Paul Norton and Wendy Stapleton will visit Barnawatha, while vice-chairman of the Australian and New Zealand Explorer’s Club, Roger Chao, will appear at Chiltern and Rutherglen.

Mr Chao has tackled many worthy causes, including homelessness and volunteering with several search and rescue organisations.

The explorer-adventurer is an environmental campaigner and philosopher-ethicist.

His interests include applied ethics, atheism, ethical theory, and political philosophy and its role in day life.