Our Partnership has a range of priorities it is championing. Some of these have led to new initiatives in our region.
Read about some of these projects below.
Tourism was a common priority identified by the Gippsland community at our first couple of Regional Assemblies and mini Assemblies, and through our on-going consultation process.
As a direct result of the Partnership's efforts, the Minister for Regional Development and the Minister for Tourism announced in 2017 $400,000 for the creation of a Gippsland Destination Management Plan.
The aim of the Plan is to increase Gippsland’s visitor economy, to make it more competitive, adaptive and diverse.
The project is now underway, with the Destination Management Plan expected to take nine months and be completed by December 2018.
Destination Gippsland is managing this piece of work on behalf of the State Government.
Regional Partnership member and CEO of Destination Gippsland Terry Robinson explained, “We are excited that the development of the Gippsland Destination Management Plan is underway. We will be seeking consultation from industry and business in the coming months and look forward to wide-spread contributions.”
In 2016 alone, there were 5.2 million visitors to Gippsland, who contributed $781 million to the local economy.
The Plan will be the first step in identifying opportunities to lift visitor numbers, improve the resilience and adaptive capacity of the region, as well as increase participation in arts, cultural, sporting and recreational activities.
At our 2017 Assembly, Gippslanders told us how important skills and education are for the future of our region, while at our 2018 Assembly, education and raising educational aspiration, again took centre stage.
We have repeatedly taken our region’s education and training message to the Victorian Government, and were thrilled by announcements in the 2018/19 Budget of huge support for TAFE across the state, and $35.5 million for the redevelopment of Federation Training Morwell and $25 million for Federation Training’s Port of Sale Development to consolidate its services in Sale into a new Educations Community and Industry Hub.
Our education aspirations for the region have also been aided by the new Gippsland Tech School, located at Gippsland's Hi Tech Precinct in Morwell.
The new Tech School, which opened earlier this year, will be accessed by over 5,000 students from both government and non-government secondary schools right across Gippsland.
The facility includes a high-tech skills lab, a fabrication room and a makerspace for students to use and get hands-on experience with specialised high-tech equipment.
The school will focus on science, technology, engineering and maths with a focus on Gippsland’s primary industries to improve employment pathways and future jobs for people across the region.
Partnership member Paul Ford has been involved in the planning of the Tech School and believes it represents an exciting educational development for the region. “This project will provide our students with access to the latest technology and industry led programs – opening up new opportunities for local students,” he explains.
The Gippsland Digital Plan has attempted to identify current gaps in the region’s digital landscape while outlining priority actions for how these gaps can be addressed.
The plan brings together the most up-to-date information on the region’s current digital infrastructure and services, helping establish a sound evidence-base on current and emerging gaps, needs and priorities.
Several priorities have been identified to help close the digital divide across Gippsland, including addressing mobile blackspots, better services for remote and vulnerable communities, promoting stronger NBN and future technologies, facilitating digital literacy training and enhancing connectivity for tourism across the region.