Benalla Rural City - 30 March: Benalla invited to talk about big questions for the future
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 News>30 March: Benalla invited to talk about big questions for the future  
30 March: Benalla invited to talk about big questions for the future  Printer Friendly

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From classrooms to kitchen tables across Benalla Rural City, people are talking about the municipality’s first ever long-term Community Plan, which will outline the community’s shared vision for 2036.

In a “kitchen table conversation” approach, people are being given six key questions to ask guests at their kitchen table, to deliver back to the Community Planning Project Steering Committee, a group made up of community and Council representatives who are leading the development of the plan. Individuals, community groups and organisations are welcome to convene kitchen table conversations about what they want for their community by 2036.

Community members are already proving keen to participate, with a training workshop in February for conducting the conversations attended by 35 people.

Those who are unable to participate in kitchen table conversations will be able to share their ideas via a specially produced postcard, an interactive website at www.talkingbenalla.com.au, or workshops to be held throughout April and May.

“To truly reflect the direction we want our rural city to take, we need input from as many people as possible who are connected to Benalla,” said Chair of the Community Planning Project Steering Committee, Cr Barbara Alexander AO.

“You may live, work or study here or you may come here to visit. We need people who are young and old, live in town and out of town, people who have been connected to Benalla for a long time and a short time. We need students, retirees, sportspeople, artists, farmers, business people, people who speak up all the time and people who rarely speak up.

“The development of this plan is being driven and owned by the community. The result will be a roadmap to creating the best-possible future for Benalla.”

Howard Bartlett, who recently hosted a kitchen table conversation, said: "I enjoyed the opportunity to bring people together and to hear their ideas for Benalla. It was wonderful to see people building relationships, often with others they had not met before. I would encourage everyone to participate and voice their big ideas for what they would like Benalla to be like in 20 years time".

A special interactive website has been set up at www.talkingbenalla.com.au, where people can download a guide to hosting a kitchen table conversation, find out about workshops, share their ideas and view videos, photographs and stories from other participants.

Postcards are available from the Customer Service Centre, the Sir Edward ‘Weary’ Dunlop Learning Centre, the Visitor Information Centre, the Benalla Art Gallery, the rural villages and many businesses and organisations. For a full list visit www.talkingbenalla.com.au


Image right: Eleanor and Josh show off their ideas for the future



 
children at a table holding up drawings
 

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