Networks and Organisations
Economic Development Organisations
Within the Cessnock Local Government Area there are currently four active Chambers of Commerce, an incorporated Tourism Association and an industry group representing the viticulture industry. The Lower Hunter Business Enterprise Centre and Business Incubator is located at Kurri Kurri. Council works closely with all of these groups on a range of projects and partnerships resulting in the establishment of strong communication channels with the business community.
Strong ties are maintained with the Newcastle office of the NSW Department of State and Regional Development and the Hunter Economic Development Corporation.
Volunteering - You too can make a difference
What can I do?
The answer is simple - anything you want! At Cessnock there are jobs that last as little as one hour and/or committees you can work with for years. The things you can do cover a wide range. Here are some examples, great and small, that volunteers do:
- Be an Ambassador for visitors to the Region.
- Sell raffle tickets for various not-for-profit service clubs.
- Recruit new businesses to the area by becoming actively involved with your local Business Chamber – there are four active Chambers in Cessnock. Council’s Marketing and Economic Development Unit can provide more information.
- Fill envelopes and assist with decoration/setup activities for various events across the Local Government Area.
- Help out at the Farmers’ Market or various Mural Projects.
- Arrange the Mural Tours at Kurri Kurri.
- Volunteer for the annual Nostalgia Cruise.
- Volunteer for the annual Hunter Spectacular in Cessnock.
- Volunteer to assist with Kurri Kurri Karnivale.
- Lend a hand to your local Tidy Towns group.
- Volunteer to help out with Landcare activities.
Anything you can do is important. The best way to find something that works for you is to talk to a member of Council Staff in the Marketing and Economic Development Unit, a member of Towns With Heart or the Hunter Valley Business Enterprise Centre. Members of the Marketing and Economic Development Unit are involved in and have a sound understanding of strategic local and regional issues and are also involved with numerous tourism and development related initiatives to assist you in identifying where best you can make a difference. After just a few minutes we'll think of something - trust us!
Who's on first? ... the order of things
Who do I report to?
Most of the project work you are involved with will more than likely be a subcommittee of the project that you have chosen to assist. In most cases, you'll report to the Chairperson of the committee or subcommittee you are working on with any progress or questions. If you have not been told, the first question you should ask is "Who do I check in with?"
What is the role of Council staff?
Staff are responsible for either the day-to-day operation or in some cases represent Council on the Management Committee of a number of the specific projects and you may end up interacting with them a great deal. You can always ask a member of staff for help and information but remember our staff members usually have a lot of pots boiling and may refer you to an appropriate committee.
Money … Money … Money
Here are some basic guidelines to follow:
- Budgets are set before a committee spends any money. Volunteer positions do not get paid for their time.
- The members of a subcommittee prepare estimates of their expenses and get approval from their Chairperson (initials and date) before making any purchases.
- Save all receipts.
Your time is valuable to us!
Tracking the hours you work is important for demonstrating the commitment of our volunteers. Corporate contributors, new business prospects and various Government agencies are all interested to know how much the community invests back into the area. Volunteer hours are one of the best measures of our success.
- If you are working at an event and show up for a prearranged shift, don't worry about tracking your hours--we'll do it for you.
- If you're working on a project or committee that meets regularly, or doing work for us on your own, you're the only one who really knows how much time you've spent - please keep a record.
- Your Project Coordinator is responsible for developing/getting “Time Tracker” forms to you and for collecting them.
Sample Volunteer Hours Record:
Activity: Bought table decoration for Mural Dinner and left at Towns with Heart Office
Time: 1.5 hours
Thank you for taking the time to consider joining a project, subcommittee or assisting other service clubs thereby working to make our community a better place. Your work with us will pay dividends now and in the future.