Light up this Christmas by shopping local

Dubbo Regional Council (DRC) is hoping to make everyone’s Christmas that little bit brighter by launching the Shop Local this Christmas campaign, during a time when our business owners need support more than ever.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, total local spending in Dubbo was down more than 42 per cent in recent months, including a 30 per cent reduction in residents’ spending.

“We’ve seen significant decline in spending off the back of this last COVID-19 pandemic lockdown,” said Director Culture and Economy Natasha Comber. “It’s programs like this, in collaboration with Business Chambers in Dubbo and Wellington that help drive foot traffic and is one element of how we respond to these economic impacts resulting from COVID-19.”

The significant reduction in local spending was coupled with an increase of almost 50 per cent in residents online spending.

“We’ve all heard the reports that supply chains across the board are stretched,” Ms Comber said. “Which is all the more reason to buy now and buy local rather than shopping online and risk items not arriving in time for Christmas, while also supporting the local economy.”

The Shop Local campaign includes a competition where residents spend $20 or more at a participating business, and go in the draw to win in a share of more than $2000 in myDubbo Region Shopping Cards.

The cards, which are an EFTPOS-based gift card, are redeemable at more than 150 stores across Dubbo, Wellington and surrounding villages. Entry forms can be filled out in store or dropped off at one of the region’s Visitor Information Centres.

Wellington café Four Cats Coffee is one of the participating businesses, and owner Kylie Barton has welcomed the initiative to encourage local spending.

“We have some incredibly supportive residents and I encourage everyone to get on board with this campaign,” said Ms Barton. “I have loved seeing all our locals back drinking their favourite coffee, and especially seeing our new indoor seating area being enjoyed by friends reconnecting after lockdown.”

David Hughes from Mass Nutrition in Dubbo said the timing for the campaign was ideal.

“The Shop Local promotion for Dubbo has come at a great time as we all look to recover from the quieter months that have seen a decline in foot traffic and sales due to the pandemic,” Mr Hughes said. “Keeping the business local and in the community is more vital than ever, and as we head into Christmas the timing is perfect.”

The competition runs through to 19 December and prizes are drawn on 20 December. Receipts will be collected when prizes are redeemed, and a full list of participating stores can be found online at dubbo.com.au/shop

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