10 November 2018: Elijah Buol, a Board Director of the Ethnic Communities Council of Queensland, a former refugee from South Sudan, a community advocate and devoted husband and father of four was named the 2019 Queensland Local Hero in the prestigious Australian of the Year Awards.
Announced last night at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, award recipients of the Queensland Australian of Year, Senior Australian of the Year, Young Australian of the Year and Local Hero will join their state and territory counterparts in the national awards in Canberra on 25 January 2019.
Mr Buol said he is both honoured and humbled by this recognition for his service to Queensland and Australian, a country that has given him hope.
“I arrived in 2002 at age 16 as an unaccompanied minor with nothing but a bag of hope and aspiration to change my life,” he said. “I am very proud to be Australian and called Australia my home; a home which has given me the opportunity to realise my potential, aspirations and hope rooted in principles of a fair-go. This award will not only motivate me to do more, but also inspire other young people from multicultural and refugee backgrounds to aim high and dream big.”
ECCQ CEO Garry Page said Mr Buol has been a passionate community advocate and volunteer for several years and is most deserving of this recognition.
“I have known Elijah for several years and I have seen him work tirelessly advocating for social and justice reform, assisting with the development of community associations and helping refugees and migrants settle by assisting with little things to big things like figuring out how to access proper housing.
“As a criminologist, social justice reform and assisting youth with challenges and issues including advocating for their rights in the criminal justice system, are areas of work close to his heart.
“I have been so fortunate to work closely with Elijah and see the results of his efforts. He has contributed greatly to the lives of many.”
ECCQ Chairperson Alton Budd said he thankful for Elijah’s contributions to ECCQ.
“On behalf of ECCQ, I congratulate Elijah and all of the recipients of the 2019 Queensland Australian of Year Awards. All of the recipients, and all of the nominees, contribute to Queensland in extraordinary ways.”
For more information about the Awards visit australiaoftheyear.org.
For more information about ECCQ visit www.eccq.com.au.
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