The Andrews Labor Government’s Regional Partnerships are evolving to deliver for regional Victorians, with more than 100 people attending the Regional Partnership Conference in Marysville to discuss future opportunities.
Minister for Regional Development Jaclyn Symes attended the conference to hear from the Partnerships and those who have benefited from investment in their regions.
The Labor Government established Regional Partnerships in 2016 to bring regional communities’ voices directly to Government. Over the past three years, the Partnerships have met with thousands of people in their regions, including through widely-attended Regional Assemblies.
Thanks to their tireless work, a number of significant initiatives across the state have become a reality, including the establishment of Victoria’s Cross Border Commissioner and the Healthy Heart of Victoria program in Central Victoria.
Today’s Regional Partnership Conference discussed the benefits of more focused engagements in key areas, rather than running large-scale, multi-issue Regional Assemblies as in previous years.
These smaller forums are addressing issues of homelessness, strengthening health and wellbeing for vulnerable young people, the impacts of climate change, supporting small towns and mental health in regional communities – issues which require action across government to achieve change.
As well as advocating for additional resources for their regions, the Partnerships have played an important role in bringing together diverse groups to address local issues, and they have led to new ways of working at a local level.
Earlier this year the Partnerships published their Outcomes Roadmaps – a summary of the key, long-term strategic areas of focus for each Partnership. Today’s conference provided an opportunity for Partnership members to share their experiences and to explore areas for possible joint efforts in the future.