A Warrnambool family who has shed thousands of tears in the past few weeks was emotional for a different reason on Sunday.
Rajasegaran Manikam spoke about feeling like part of a family living in Warrnambool after learning a bid to obtain permanent residency in Australia had been granted.
On Sunday, they gathered with members of their extended family - the south-west community - for a day of celebration. Michael Ferguson organised the day to support the family.
There were embraces shared and tears of joy shed as dozens of people shared the special day with Mr Manikam, his wife Premawathy Balasupramarium and their children Vanisre and Vani.
Warrnambool mayor Tony Herbert said he was overjoyed for the family.
He said the community had opened the family with open arms, with 90,000 people signing an online petition urging the government to allow them to stay.
"It makes you realise why you live here," Cr Herbert said.
He said he spoke to Mr Rajasegaran on Saturday and congratulated him on "being a local".
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