Keeffe soaks up Outback

MOUNT Isa Australia Day ambassador Kevin Keeffe will use his trip to the city to find out more ways the Red Cross can help in the North West.

Mr Keeffe is the executive director of Red Cross in Queensland and will soak up the atmosphere in Mount Isa for Australia Day celebrations.

He first came to Mount Isa in 1975 as part of a theatre troop and has since returned to visit the Mount Isa Red Cross branch. Mr Keeffe said he was an Australia Day ambassador in 2013 in North Queensland.

‘‘I was an Australia Day ambassador in 2013 at Thursday Island off the tip of Cape York,’’ he said.

‘‘It was a great opportunity to get to know a community that was very different and help them celebrate Australia Day.

‘‘It was very different and very enjoyable.’’

While in Mount Isa, Mr Keeffe said he will be meeting with the council and attending the Australia Day breakfast celebrations. ‘‘Get in Sunday and I’m meeting the mayor and councils and then there is an Australia Day breakfast Monday morning, where I will be giving a speech and helping out on stage,’’ he said.

‘‘The council have kindly offered to take me on an underground mine tour, and I am hoping to meet with the Red Cross Branch while in Mount Isa.’’

Mr Keeffe said his main message for the Mount Isa community was to celebrate for those who give up their time, money and effort to make Australia a better place in which to live and to listen to the opinion of Mount Isa residents about ways that Red Cross might be able to help more.

He has also been involved in indigenous affairs in Queensland, including in Cape York and efforts on remote housing in Queensland.

Mr Keeffe said he was looking forward to celebrating with the Mount Isa community and meeting Red Cross volunteers.

‘‘I’m ready to explore all the city has to offer, including the mine, the lookout and Lake Moondara,’’ he said.

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