The Royal Australian Mint will launch the first coin in their new series titled Australia Remembers at the Royal College of Nursing, Australia’s International Nurses Day celebrations in Canberra tonight.
The series pays tribute to past and present Australians who played important roles during times of war, conflict and peacekeeping. The first coin in this series honours past and present Australian Services nurses.
"Since the time of the Boer War, service nurses have contributed by caring for the sick and wounded in every conflict to which Australia has committed troops," said Graham Smith, Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Royal Australian Mint.
"Whilst this coin has been made specifically for the Australia Remember series, I like to think it reminds everyone about the work that nurses do all around the world and realise how often they go unrecognised," said Mr Smith.
International Nurses Day is celebrated annually on May 12 and marks the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth. It is a time of celebration for nurses around the world.
"I am proud to see our nurses recognised through the release of this stunning new collector coin from the Royal Australian Mint. For over 100 years Australian Services nurses have provided assistance and care with such dedication, commitment and courage," said Debra Cerasa FRCNA, Chief Executive Officer, Royal College of Nursing, Australia.
The International Council of Nurses, Geneva, Switzerland, assigns a theme to each year’s celebration. The theme for 2009 is Delivering Quality, Serving Communities: Nursing Leading Care Innovations.
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About the Royal Australian Mint
His Royal Highness, The Duke of Edinburgh, officially opened the Royal Australian Mint, Canberra, on Monday 22nd February 1965. The Mint was commissioned to produce Australia’s decimal coinage, which was to be introduced into circulation on 14th February 1966. The Royal Australian Mint holds a place in history as the first mint in Australia not to be a branch of the Royal Mint, London.
Since opening in 1965 the Mint has produced over eleven billion circulating coins and has the capacity to produce over two million coins per day, or over six hundred million coins per year.
The Royal Australian Mint has struck coins for a number of South Pacific nations. Export coins were first struck in 1969 for New Zealand and, since then, coins have been produced for Papua New Guinea, Tonga, Western Samoa, Cook Islands, Fiji, Malaysia, Thailand, Nepal, Bangladesh, Israel and Tokelau.