I think we all agree that it is good to have 2020 behind us.
Having said that while the impact of COVID-19 19 has had a devastating impact on some of our businesses it has also had an uplift in business for many others.
We would all agree though that we are in a better position then this time last year.
While the impact of the bushfires will be felt for many years to come there is recovery. Some 40 odd homes have already been replaced across the valley along with much of the infrastructure lost.
We have had rain and the valley is looking green which is a great relief to our farming sector.
The imminent arrival of a COVID-19 19 vaccine gives us hope that things will soon slowly start to return to some sort of normal.
Your Chamber executive do not meet in January however we have still been busy.
A number of organisations are applying for grant funding under the Bushfire local recovery fund and have asked the Chamber for letters of support. These projects if funded will provide a real boost to the local economy as well as provide some infrastructure that the community will benefit from for many years to come.
Speaking of grants as mentioned last month the Bega Chamber was successful in a small building resilience grant and we will be rolling out some activities across Cobargo, Bemboka, Candelo, Tathra, and Bega over the next month so keep an eye open.
Surf Life Saving
The Tathra Business community have rallied together over the last few years to provide life saving services on Tathra Beach through the month of February. Council fund the program over the Christmas holidays but ends at the end of January.
Your Chamber has contributed financially to this effort since it commenced and are pleased to again support it this year.
Membership continues to grow for the Bega Chamber with a 35% increase in the last six months.
Our newest members are Wendy and the team from Bankin Beans; Adrian, Susie and the crew from School of Strength; Raelene and the team from Raelene’s Hair Affair and Chris from E2B Phone repairs. We welcome them on board and trust that your businesses continue to thrive and that we can provide support to help this happen.
Over the last few months, I have been encouraged by the amount of vision in this community. There are individuals, organisations and businesses that have some great ideas. Some are small, simple ideas while others are large scale developments. Some are being actively worked on, while others are just dreams at this point. I believe that as a chamber we need to engage with these people and ideas so that we take a collaborative approach to build a better Bega. Together we can gain more support, we can advocate better with Governments and improve the chance of success.
Of course, we would love to hear from you. If you have an idea or vision or can see a problem that needs fixing, then let us know.
Over the next couple of weeks, we will send out our calendar of events for 2021. We are planning retail promotions at Easter, Spring and Christmas. We will be staging the customer service awards later in the year and of course throughout the year we will be having regular networking events.
All the best for 2021