The McGowan Government is getting behind a locally driven tourism initiative that will assist in supporting small businesses and tourism operators in Collie-Preston to recover from the economic impacts of COVID-19.
Premier Mark McGowan and Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray today announced $50,000 from the Collie Futures Small Grants Program (CFSGP) towards the Connecting to Collie-Preston project.
The Donnybrook Regional Tourism Association will use the funding to develop a range of targeted packages to entice visitors to take advantage of the opportunities provided by local tourism and business operators.
The development of the packages will provide a chance for the operators to adapt in the recovery from COVID-19 by expanding their business streams.
The diverse southern approach to Collie – including Donnybrook and Collie via the Preston River Valley – will be the focus of the campaign, which will be aimed at attracting WA tourists in the face of wider intrastate and interstate travel restrictions.
The funding allocation forms part of the State Government’s ongoing commitment to diversifying the local economy and deliver sustainable jobs through developing industry sectors as part of the Collie Futures Fund.
Both the $2 million Collie Futures Small Grants Program and $18 million Collie Futures Industry Development Fund are part of the $20 million Collie Futures Fund. For more information or to apply for funding, visit https://www.swdc.wa.gov.au
As stated by Premier Mark McGowan:
“The impact of COVID-19 on our tourism sector has been devastating. My heart goes out to the small businesses around Western Australia who have been impacted during these challenging times.
“I am pleased my Government has been able to fund this fantastic initiative that will encourage tourism to Collie-Preston, helping to build business resilience in this great part of our wonderful State. It’s a great example of the community and State Government working together as we take the first steps on the road to recovery together.
“Separate to this initiative, my Government has released a multi-million recovery package to support small tourism operators.”
As stated by Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan:
“This is a great initiative that will help to revitalise the tourism sector in this region and protect local jobs.
“As intrastate travel restrictions ease, I encourage people to get out and rediscover the regions of Western Australia – places like Collie-Preston have a lot to offer.
“Exploring your own backyard – holidaying at home – is a great way you can support local businesses.”
As stated by Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray:
“We have all heard how hard those in the tourism industry have been impacted during the pandemic but as restrictions are lifted over the coming weeks and months Western Australians are going to look to holiday closer to home.
“The Donnybrook Regional Tourism Association has recognised that and were on the front foot to put their proposal forward and I’m pleased the State Government has gotten behind it so quickly.
“Collie and Donnybrook often get overlooked by travellers despite being just over a two-hour drive, having a growing number of great attractions and rich histories.
“This project will help promote our corner of the South-West as a cohesive package and support local tourism operators recover at the same time.”