OUR UTOPIA BIG WIN­NER

Coun­cil cam­paign se­cures na­tional award

Whitsunday Times - - FRONT PAGE - Clau­dia Alp clau­dia.alp@whit­sun­day­times.com.au

THE Whit­sun­days has earned na­tional recog­ni­tion in Can­berra, with the Whit­sun­day Re­gional Coun­cil tak­ing out the Na­tional Award for Ex­cel­lence in Com­mu­nity De­vel­op­ment and Ser­vice De­liv­ery.

The award was pre­sented last week­end for the Our Whit­sun­day: Our Utopia cam­paign which show­cased the tough­ness of lo­cal res­i­dents who bounced back in record time after nat­u­ral dis­as­ter brought the re­gion to its knees in March last year.

Mayor An­drew Will­cox said res­i­dents should be proud that their com­mu­nity spirit was be­ing recog­nised on the na­tional stage.

The clip, which runs for two min­utes and 42 sec­onds, shows footage of lo­cals in dif­fer­ent lo­ca­tions through­out the Whit­sun­day re­gion in­clud­ing the ru­ral fea­tures of Proser­pine, crop farms and beaches in Bowen and our very own iconic is­lands, filmed post-Cyclone Deb­bie.

The cam­paign won the Queens­land Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Man­agers award ear­lier this year be­fore scoop­ing the pool at the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Pro­fes­sion­als Na­tional Fed­er­a­tion Awards in Can­berra on the week­end.

Coun­cil CEO Barry Omund­son said the cam­paign was launched to pro­vide a pos­i­tive vi­sion of the fu­ture and “in­spire re­gional pride” among res­i­dents through “lo­cal faces in lo­cal places, stun­ning nat­u­ral beauty and the di­ver­sity of the re­gion”.

“This is great recog­ni­tion for the ‘lo­cal stars’ who ap­peared in the cam­paign and, most im­por­tantly, all of our Whit­sun­day res­i­dents for their gen­uine com­mu­nity spirit, pas­sion and pride for the di­verse re­gion: the trop­i­cal par­adise which oth­ers envy but we call home,” he said.

Tourism Whit­sun­day gen­eral man­ager Tash Wheeler em­pha­sised the ben­e­fits of the cam­paign for tourism in the re­gion, la­belling it the gift that kept on giv­ing for the re­gion.

The Our Whit­sun­day: Our Utopia cam­paign was a col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween the coun­cil and Trop­i­cal Ex­po­sure.

It can be viewed on­line through the Whit­sun­day Re­gional Coun­cil web­site or on Youtube.

PHOTO: SARAH COLLINS

LO­CAL STARS: A screen­shot from the film Our Whit­sun­day: Our Utopia.

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