160 Census Collectors hit the streets and roads of Northern New England

9 August 2010 | NSW/68

160 Census Collectors will hit the streets of Northern New England today to deliver Census forms to every household in the region to ensure every person is accurately counted on Census night, Tuesday, 9 August.

Leslie Widders, a dedicated local Aboriginal community worker, is a Census Collector for her second time this year and will be collecting in North West Armidale in the Girraween area.

Leslie, who has lived in the same Armidale house for over 50 years, has watched Armidale grow dramatically from a sleepy country town into a major regional centre.

“There are now lots of singletons with no dependants and many sea changers moving into the area. The University and three boarding schools attract diverse people.

"Many Aboriginal people are also coming to Armidale because of the services that are available here. We have a much larger cultural mix than most other country towns.

"The Census lets us know how much our community has grown and highlights the need to build upon services such as housing, health and education facilities.

"Hopefully we can build on current infrastructure and programs by getting an accurate Census count of everyone in the community."

Leslie is a passionate volunteer who gives back to her community in many other ways.

"I am the President of the Aboriginal Education Consultative Group, a Board Member on the Aboriginal Cultural Centre and Keeping Place, a Member of the Community Justice Group and I also work with the Australian Native Title Association."

More information is available online at www.abs.gov.au/census or by calling the Census Inquiry Service on 1300 338 776