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November 2011 Newsletter

In This Issue

Welcome from the Chair

Mal Peters, Chair

Dear Fellow Northern Inland Residents,

Just as the year seems to be coming to a close, things are getting busier than ever. The region’s farmers are busy getting harvest underway and things aren’t slowing down for Regional Development Australia Northern Inland either. Our recently held Northern Inland Innovation Awards were a roaring success as always and a huge congratulations goes to Innovation of the Year winner and Glen Innes based business, Photo Create.

Round Two of the Regional Development Australia Fund was also opened earlier this month and we look forward to some exciting and innovative applications from the Northern Inland. We have a vibrant and diverse region and under round one of the RDAF our region proved that we have a number of significant and worth-while projects. Indeed we gained $8m, the largest allocation in NSW for the Freeman House Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Centre. I’m looking forward to our region having continued success in Round Two.

Mal Peters, Chair

Regional Development Australia Northern Inland seeking a slice of $200m

A further $200 million is now available to regional communities under the second round of the Regional Development Australia Fund (RDAF). Regional Development Australia Northern Inland (RDANI) Chair, Mal Peters said the region needs projects that are truly regional and go across a number of Local Government Areas to be successful.

“This round is all about investment-ready projects that will have a strong regional impact. Projects should contribute to and sustain regional economic growth or provide wide community benefit,” Mr Peters said.

Key aspects of Round Two include a two-stage application process that will reduce costs for applicants, embed local decision making in the process, and provide early certainty for proponents about their application.
In selecting RDANI’s three priority projects, the Minister has asked RDA committees to take into account the priorities of our Regional Plan, the capacity of the project to address needs in the region, the level of community support for the project, impact of the project on the region and neighbouring regions and readiness to proceed.

Further information, including guidelines can be found at www.rdani.org.au.

Free NBN Information Sessions Come to the Region!

The Northern Inland is incredibly fortunate to have one of Australia’s leading telecommunications advocates in our own backyard. Alun Davies, the head of the NBN New England Work Group and a member of the Regional Telecommunications Review Committee, is based in Armidale and is passionate about bringing the NBN to all corners of Regional Australia.

A workshop will be held in Narrabri at the Crossing Theatre Narrabri from 5pm on Tuesday 22nd November 2011 with drinks and canapés provided. A second workshop will be held the following morning, Wednesday 23rd November 2011, in conjunction with the Moree Chamber of Commerce at the Moree Services Club at 8am with breakfast provided to attendees.

Mr Davies is passionate about telecommunications in regional areas and will provide an excellent insight on the benefits of high speed broadband and optic fibre cabling in simple, easy to understand language. For more information on the NBN Workshops and to RSVP for the events in Narrabri and Moree please call RDANI on (02) 6771 2790 or email rdani@rdani.org.au

The Industry Capability Network’s (ICN) Northern Region Manager for NSW will also be on hand to answer questions from local contractors interested in being involved in the construction of the National Broadband Network. ICN is partnering with NBN Co and their prime contractors to maximise local participation in the completion of the construction of the National Broadband Network.

Northern Inland Innovation Awards Wrap Up

Member for Tamworth, Kevin Anderson; Member for New England, Tony Windsor; Howard and Pam Eastwood from 2011 Innovation of the Year winner, Glen Innes based 'Photo Create'; and Chair of Regional Development Australia Northern Inland, Mal Peters.
Member for Tamworth, Kevin Anderson; Member for New England, Tony Windsor; Howard and Pam Eastwood from 2011 Innovation of the Year winner, Glen Innes based 'Photo Create'; and Chair of Regional Development Australia Northern Inland, Mal Peters.

The 4th Northern Inland Innovation Awards held in Gunnedah on Friday 28th October 2011 were another huge success with over 130 guests enjoying the evening’s festivities.

The Northern Inland is home to many innovative businesses and service providers so competition for the Innovation of the Year award was fierce with Glen Innes based company Photo Create taking home the major prize.

Photo Create has embraced advances in technology to transform their photographic business into a major employer that distributes their products globally. The recognition gained from being awarded the Innovation of the Year award is a priceless asset to their business as well as the many other businesses nominated.

For more information on the nominated business and the individual category winners please go to the Northern Inland Innovation Awards website www.niia.com.au

RDANI Bringing Top Migration Advisor to the Region

RDANI and Michael Jeremy, one of Australia's leading authorities on skilled and student migration, will soon tour the region, with a series of seminars rolling out from 28 November in Tamworth, Armidale, Goondiwindi and Moree.

The Department of Immigration and Citizenship introduced a raft of changes from July 1 this year, so helping regional employers and visa applicants to understand these changes is a practical way of supporting the region and its development.

Nationally, there is a great deal of misunderstanding, about the options and new rules that exist for skilled migration. In some cases rural and regional employers face even greater challenges. Significant changes have been made to the points test for general skilled migration and the entire employer nomination system.

Australian immigration processes can be complex and changes occur frequently. The workshops will explain how employers can use immigration to achieve good business outcomes and get the skilled workers they need.
Topics discussed will include: Regional Skilled Migration programmes; 457 Work Visas; Australian employer obligation to the Immigration Department; the do’s and don'ts of employing temporary visa holders; best practice approaches to working with the Immigration Department; and what RDANI can do to help local businesses and organisations.

Seminars will take place in Tamworth at the UNE Access Centre on Monday, 28 November; in Armidale at the TAS Hoskins Theatre, as part of an Armidale and District Chamber of Commerce information evening on Tuesday, 29 November; in Goondiwindi at The Royal Hotel on Wednesday, 30 November; and at the Moree Ex-Services Club Function Room on Thursday, 1 December. All seminars will have a 5:30pm for a 6pm start and run until 8pm. All are free of charge, except the Armidale and District Chamber of Commerce event - members: $15 and non-members/visitors: $25.

RDANI primarily certifies Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) and Skilled Regional Sponsored (SRS) Visas. RDANI certified close to 250 visas in the past financial year, from health professionals to abattoir workers, architects to trades people. We're working to improve the Immigration Department's appreciation of the region's acute skills shortages and agricultural occupations.

Limited one-on-one appointments with Michael Jeremy can be arranged by calling Kim Hastings on: 0427 008 572.


Innovative Business - Vyntage Vogue

Vyntage Vogue

As the recent Innovation Awards have attested too, the Northern Inland is home to a wide variety of businesses who ‘think outside the box’ and RDANI will be profiling past nominees and winners of the Northern Inland Innovation Awards in the months to come.

This month’s innovative business is Vyntage Vogue which is based in Narrabri NSW and they were a nominee in the Professional and Retail Services category in 2010. Vyntage Vogue designs and manufactures beautiful furniture, soft furnishings and home wares in the heart of Narrabri and also has a successful online store that sees their products flying out all over the world.

Businesses like Vyntage Vogue are an asset to the Northern Inland community and we are very proud to have such a high standard of retailer and manufacturer in our very own backyard. If you are ever in Narrabri make sure you have a look at the beautiful shop or check out their range at www.vyntagevogue.com.au

Youth Challenge Australia – Indigenous Youth Leadership Program

Youth Challenge Australia Logo

Youth Challenge Australia is currently recruiting for their next Indigenous Youth Leadership Program (IYLP). This is a fully supported program, funded by the Australian Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA), which sends young Indigenous Australians on a seven week leadership and community development project in Vanuatu.

This program offers an invaluable opportunity to gain leadership skills, explore new personal boundaries and make important contributions where it counts. This program is open to all Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people aged between 21 and 30 who are available to undertake a seven week (one week in Sydney and six in Vanuatu) leadership, community development and cultural exchange project between 21st June 2012 and 8th August 2012.

This project is a fantastic opportunity and would be ideal for a resident of the Northern Inland. For more information, please go to www.youthchallenge.org.au/IYLP

Health and Wellbeing - Australian Red Cross Blood Service

Australian Red Cross Blood Service Logo

With the holiday season fast approaching and more and more people on our roads, now is the ideal time to donate blood. The need for blood increases over the holiday period and resources are drastically low. Currently only one in 30 Australians donate blood but one in three of us will need blood at some stage.

Many people are only alive today because of Australia’s generous blood donors and people who give blood are united by their generosity and their desire to give back to the community.

Blood donation centres are located at most hospitals in the region or you can arrange for the Australian Red Cross Blood Service to come to a workplace, school or community centre. For more information please contact the blood service via www.donateblood.com.au

Grants, Funding Opportunities and Tenders

As RDANI has access to a plethora of grants and funding opportunities, as of this month, there will be a new Grants Portal on our website which can be found here www.rdani.org.au/our-region/grants-and-funding-opportunities.php

This page will highlight a selection of the funding opportunities available as well as provide further resources on how to find the appropriate grant. The new portal will inform communities, businesses and industries within the region of the many government, business and philanthropic grants available.

Tendering is becoming a vital part of how many businesses in the Northern Inland operate on a day to day basis. RDANI would like to highlight the many sources of Tender information available.

Both state and federal governments often have projects open for tender. For more information on NSW State Government Tenders please go to tenders.nsw.gov.au for further information on Federal Government Tenders please go to www.tenders.gov.au

Commercial tenders are also becoming more popular. For more information on the commercial tendering process please go to www.tenderlink.com or www.tenders.com.au

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