The tiny Pacific island of Nauru covers just 21 square kilometres and is the world’s smallest republic. You can drive round the entire island in less than an hour!
Originally named Pleasant Island by its first European visitors, Nauru’s name now comes from the Nauruan word meaning ‘I go to the beach’.
Christianity is the main religion in Nauru. Religion plays an important part of daily life, and many children attend church groups when they are not at school.
The people of Nauru are proud of their heritage and every year they celebrate the anniversary of their independence by hoisting flags and playing lively sports events.
Nauru has been a member of the Commonwealth since 1968 and made its Commonwealth Games debut in 1990 winning one Gold and two Silver medals in Weightlifting.
As well as weightlifting, popular sports in Nauru include volleyball, netball and tennis. Nauru was one of the first nations outside Australia to adopt Australian Rules football, a sport which combines the athleticism of basketball and the contact of rugby.
Before embarking on his political career, former President Marcus Stephen won weightlifting medals at the Commonwealth Games in 1990, 1994, 1998 and 2002.
The island is known to perform remarkably well against larger nations in the Commonwealth Games, despite having a population of just under 10,000 people!