Tag Archives: RDA central west

Government extension of the Drought Communities Program

It was great to see the Federal Government make further announcements around drought support earlier this month.

One of the elements most welcomed by local communities was an extension of the Drought Communities Program. This program is now extended to 128 councils, across the nation, doing it tough. This is great news for the local councils across the Central West.

This program sees immediate injections into local infrastructure and drought relief projects. This is good news for local jobs and economic growth.

For more information, visit:


Image credit: ‘Sunset’ by Ella Gibson – Entry in the ‘Central West Is Best’ 2019 Photography Competition held by Regional Development Australia Central West.

A message from CEO Sam Harma – November 2019

‘Family Matters’ – Business Succession Planning Workshop in Parkes – this Thursday 28 November

RDA Central West is proud to have partnered with the National Association for Loss and Grief (NALAG) to hold a Succession Planning for Family Businesses workshop in Parkes this Thursday 28 November at the Parkes Services Club from 9am to 4pm.

This FREE to attend, one-day forum will see expert presenters provide valuable tips and tools for navigating the path through family communication to create a ‘family-owned’ business plan, showcasing a clear vision to banks and other stakeholders.  Please note that the workshop is FREE but registration is essential and still possible today.

For more information about the Family Matters workshop or to register your place, visit: https://www.nalag.org.au/familymatters


Climate Change Community Grants now OPEN

The Climate Change Community grants program has been established to support projects that help communities to take action and manage climate change impacts by being able to better plan, prepare for and respond to heatwaves, storms, floods, drought and bush fires, to increase their resilience to the impacts of climate change.

Applications are now OPEN from now until Friday 31 January 2020.

For further information, visit:


Image credit: ‘Sun & Dust’ by Ebony Hewitt – Entrant in the ‘Central West Is Best’ 2019 Photography Competition held by Regional Development Australia Central West.


Exciting NEW partnership formed to support regional talent development

Fremantle and Screenworks have announced an exciting collaboration to promote career advancement for burgeoning regional screen practitioners throughout Australia.

The partnership demonstrates a commitment to attracting fresh, undiscovered talent to the film and TV industry from a wide range of backgrounds as well as a vital step to increasing job opportunities for regional screen talent with potential to connect them to a global landscape.

Screenworks will shortly be calling for applications to their 2020 Career Pathway programs.

Further information can be found at:  www.screenworks.com.au


Building Better Regions Fund Round Four – CLOSES 19 Dec 19

Round Four of the widely successful Building Better Regions Fund closes Thursday 19 December. This round will be focused on supporting projects in drought affected areas. For Round Four there is a total of $200 million available.

The Infrastructure Projects Stream supports projects that provide economic and social benefits to regional and remote areas. The projects can be either construction of new infrastructure or the upgrade or extension of existing infrastructure. Grants are from $20,000 up to $10 million.

Please contact the RDA Central West office t. 02 6369 1600 or e. admin@rdacentralwest.org.au for any advice or support regarding your application to this grant opportunity.

Applications CLOSE at 5pm on Thursday 19 December 2019.

More information about the grant can be found at:



Smart Farms Small Grants now OPEN

Grant applications for round Three of the Federal Government’s Smart Farms Small Grants program are now open and close 11pm, 19 December 2019.

Funding between $5,000-$50,000 is available to support projects that increase the knowledge, skills and capacity of farming, forestry and fishing communities to adopt best practice sustainable agriculture.

For further information, visit:


or contact Community Grants Hub, t. 1800 020 283 or e. support@communitygrants.gov.au

Image credit: ‘Christmas Harvest’ by Alison Rutledge, Entrant in the ‘Central West Is Best’ 2019 Photography Competition held by Regional Development Australia Central West.


#buyfromthebush #stayinthebush and #buyregional this Christmas!

If you haven’t already checked out Instagram/social media sensation @buyfromthebush make sure you look it up on Instagram and Facebook to see the many fabulous shops and products featured from across the Central West region.

For people keen to offer support during the drought this campaign is a practical and direct way they can help support local small business in regional and rural NSW during the drought and beyond.  A sister hashtag #stayinthebush has also just been launched encouraging city siders to visit our towns – to stop, shop and stay.

A new NSW Government campaign #BuyRegional / #BuyRegionalThisChristmas is also working to connect city shoppers and rural sellers with FREE business listings available online at: https://www.nsw.gov.au/improving-nsw/regional-nsw/buy-regional-this-christmas/


Western Business Forum – review

The 2019 Western Business Forum was held in Condobolin on 4 November. With over 100 delegates in attendance it was considered a great success.

Hosted by ‘Growing Lachlan’ and RDA Central West the aim was to bring speakers to open up conversations to help people and businesses in the Lachlan Shire create solutions with the theme ‘Building a Better and Stronger Region, Now and into the Future’.

If you would like more information about the work being done by ‘Growing Lachlan’ please visit: http://www.lachlan.nsw.gov.au/community/growing-lachlan.aspx


‘Central West is Best’ Photo Comp – it’s a wrap!

RDA Central West received a number of excellent entries from all over the region for its inaugural ‘Central West Is Best’ 2019 photography competition. The winners were announced in late October.

The winning shots were taken in Grenfell, Canowindra, Blayney and Baldry/Cumnock and ultimately encapsulate the great mix of agriculture and tourism offerings that make the Central West such a distinctive region.

Category winners and runners-up received ‘Shop Local Gift Cards’ to support small businesses in the Central West region.

RDA Central West would like to thank everyone who took the time to enter.

Image credit: ‘Grenfell Silos’ by Helen Carpenter – Winner/Open Category, ‘Central West Is Best’ 2019 Photography Competition held by Regional Development Australia Central West.


How are you going? RAMHP connects rural people to the help they need

The Rural Adversity Mental Health Program (RAMHP) connects rural people to the help they need.

RAMHP has coordinators based across NSW who provide specialist knowledge and support for people experiencing any mental health concerns or who would like information for a relative or friend.

To find your local RAMHP Coordinator visit: www.ramhp.com.au

NSW Mental Health Line: 1800 011 511


Central West family businesses set to gain from experts’ visit to Parkes

‘Family Matters’ – is a FREE Workshop on succession planning for family businesses to be held in PARKES 9am-4pm, Thursday 28 November, 2019

Registration Essential! Register your family online: www.nalag.org.au/familymatters


Family businesses in and around the Central West region will have the opportunity to receive valuable tools and advice on succession planning from a team of industry experts at a FREE, one-day workshop to be held in Parkes on Thursday 28 November 2019.

Following the success of a similar event held in Narromine earlier this year, the National Association for Loss and Grief’s (NALAG) ‘Our Shout’ program coordinator, Ms Brenda Baker, is hoping to improve the experiences of succession for a greater number of family businesses. “The workshop in Narromine was attended by over 120 people and the feedback we received was overwhelmingly positive,” she said.

NALAG’s ‘Our Shout’ program promotes positive strategies to improve well-being and resilience in rural NSW communities. “Communication in family-run business is crucial not only for financial success but also the emotional and mental well-being of all family members that are involved in the partnership. Family members that are able to express their needs and concerns in a way that is productive and supportive of other family members often leads to healthy and long term sustainable family partnerships that are able to weather the hardships of not only drought but of the many other challenges that face rural and regional communities,” said Brenda Baker.

The workshop’s expert panel will include Family Succession Advisor, James Hamilton and Succession Law Specialist, Claire Booth. Ms Booth says drought conditions should not deter families from succession planning, “The impact on the drought for some farming families has meant people are stuck in a holding pattern, waiting for things to improve before starting or finishing succession planning. However, what we’re hearing from the banking sector is if a family has been thinking about a succession plan now is actually a good time to sit down and discuss the options.

“Farmers rarely want a hand out, but a hand up – they want to be in charge of their future, and what happens to their land, especially when it comes to handing over assets or management to the next generation,” said Claire Booth.

Regional Development Australia Central West’s (RDA CW) CEO Mr Sam Harma added: “This workshop will ensure attendees from across the Central West are empowered with powerful new communication skills, take home checklists on how to approach the succession plan as well as insights from the banking sector as to how best approach the bank when things are tough, cash flow is low, equity levels are stretched and the impact of drought affects even the most informed plan. Family businesses are the back-bone of our communities and we’re positive that the new skills and tools learnt at this workshop will have positive outcomes across the region.”

The ‘Family Matters: Succession Planning Workshop’ will be held at Parkes Services Club from 9am-4pm on Thursday 28 November 2019 and is supported by: Regional Development Australia Central West, Parkes Shire Council, Rural Financial Counselling Service and the Department of Primary Industries’ Rural Resilience Program.

The workshop is FREE but registration essential. Registration is NOW OPEN and will fill fast.

To register or for more event information, visit: www.nalag.org.au/familymatters or contact NALAG NSW on t. 02 6882 9222.

*A downloadable FLYER detailing the event is available here or directly from the above website.

*It would be appreciated if you think this free workshop might be of interest to members of your community if you can distribute or post these flyers up on any relevant notice boards to help spread the word to assist families in our region.


Brenda Baker | NALAG: www.nalag.org.au/familymatters | m. 0428 676 528 | e. brenda@nalag.org.au

Sam Harma | RDA Central West: www.rdacentralwest.org.au | t. 02 6369 1600 | e. admin@rdacentralwest.org.au

From Monday 18 November please contact Sam Harma directly via:  m. 0448 288 698 | e. director@rdacentralwest.org.au

‘Central West Is Best’ Photography Competition – WINNERS ANNOUNCED!

RDA Central West received a number of excellent entries from all over the region for its inaugural ‘Central West Is Best’ 2019 photography competition. The winners were announced this week.

Competition was tough with the final shots selected thought to best showcase this year’s theme:  ‘Agriculture and Tourism: Let’s Showcase Our Region’.

RDA Central West CEO Sam Harma, said the competition had achieved its aim of highlighting the region’s agriculture and tourism offerings each of which make the Central West so special.

“Our region is so diverse from Condobolin to Cowra and Oberon to Orange each community has a special reason to stop, shop, and stay.

“The winning shots encapsulate the wonderful mix of agriculture and tourism offerings that make the Central West such a distinctive region of the nation,” Mr Harma said.