Virtual Byron Shire Australia Day Awards

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Byron Shire residents are invited to watch the Byron Shire Council Australia Day Awards ceremony online on 25 January, starting at 5:30pm.

This year’s event is online because of COVID-19 and that means people everywhere and anywhere can jump on their device to celebrate the amazing people who have received the local Australia Day awards.

“It’s a real shame that we aren’t able to hold the Australia Day awards the way we normally do but because of COVID we are having to do things differently this year,” Byron Shire Mayor, Michael Lyon, said.

“The big plus though is that everyone can watch the awards and I would recommend it because the recipients are all very well-known in our community,” he said.

Mr Ron Delezio is the Byron Shire’s Australia Day Ambassador.

Mr Delezio, who has been nominated twice for Australian of the Year, is the co-founder and co-Director of the Day of Difference Foundation.

The Day of Difference Foundation is a not-for-profit charity with the purpose of reducing the impact of trauma on families and reducing the incidence of critical injuries in children.

It has raised more than $14 million for medical equipment, care and resources for families with a child who has received a critical injury.

Mr Delezio, and his wife Carolyn, established the charity after their daughter Sophie was critically injured in two separate incidents.

Sophie was just two years old when a car crashed into her day care centre in Sydney in 2003, resulting in the amputation of her legs, her right hand and right ear and burns to more than 85 percent of her body.

Remarkably Sophie recovered, but two years later was hit by a car while on a pedestrian crossing, receiving a brain injury, punctured lungs and a broken jaw, a broken collarbone and nine broken ribs.

“Mr Delezio’s strength and ability to be strong in the face of adversity and the lessons he has learned will have much meaning as we continue to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic,” Mayor Lyon, said.

The link to the Australia Day Awards ceremony is on Council’s website.

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