News & Media

Economic Development Office Newsletter - March 2020

Fri 01 May 2020

Welcome to Productive Shoalhaven - March 2020

This month the Economic Development Office is focusing on Small Businesses who were affected by the recent 2019/2020 bushfires and COVID19.

Scroll down to see what events and services are available in the Shoalhaven in 2020.

  • Click here to follow Productive Shoalhaven on Linkedin.

Grant access easier for bushfire affected small businesses


The Morrison Government has announced a new $10,000 grant and simplified access to existing loans and other services for small businesses impacted by recent bushfires.

The newly launched Bushfire Affected Small Business Rebuild package will ensure small businesses devastated by the recent bushfires receive immediate support tailored to their individual circumstances.

  • To be eligible, businesses must have experienced a 40% drop in revenue over a three-month period, compared to the previous year, as a result of the bushfires.
  • Click here to be taken to SERVICE NSW Small Business Bushfire Support Grant

The facts on Novel Coronoavirus (COVID-19)

Shoalhaven City Council advise the primary source for facts on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is NSW Health. 

Visit for useful information on personal hygiene, symptoms, medical support, treatment and reported cases, as well as quarantine requirements.  

What can you do? 

  • Practice social distancing.  Where possible, maintain a distance of 1.5 metres between yourself and another person. 
  • Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, especially before eating, cooking, or feeding others to prevent the spread of germs.
  • Sneeze into your elbow.
  • Stay at home if sick.
  • Check on your elderly relatives and friends. Call them and see how they are going. Be a considerate shopper and if you have bulk supplies of essential items, offer some to those in need. 

If you are concerned that you have the symptoms of this virus, please contact your GP by phone first or call HealthDirect on 1800 022 222.  

Government Restrictions

  • Public gatherings of over 500 people outdoors are now cancelled until further notice, effective as of 15 March 2020. Harsh fines apply to anyone in breach of this order.
  • Non essential Public gatherings of over 100 people indoors are now cancelled until further notice.
  • Infection with COVID-19 is now notifiable under the NSW Public Health Act 2010.
  • Travellers and Australian citizens arriving inbound to Australia will need to self-isolate for 14 days from arrival and report any symptoms of illness. 
  • All cruise ships which have sailed from a foreign port have been banned from entering Australian ports for 30 days.

5 steps businesses can take

In the midst of managing the business impacts of the crisis, here are 5 things you might want to think about. Information is changing daily.

  1. Make sure you are following health and safety guidance from the Department of Health.
  2. Communicate what health and safety measures you are taking in your business to your customers and partners.
  3. The Department of Health has launched a national campaign to inform all Australians about the coronavirus. They have developed a range of resources for businesses to use, find out more here.
  4. The Australian, State and Territory Governments have announced a series of measures to support businesses and individuals during this difficult time. Find out more here.
  5. Look after your mental health and reach out if you need help.

Where can I find more information?

You can also find information on COVID-19 on the below links:

For further information, call the Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080. The line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

  • Click here to be taken to the NSW Health Website

Disaster Assistance - Small Business


Has you small business been impacted by bushfire?

  • Click here for further information on Disaster Assistance support for Small Business -  Economic Development Office
  • Click here for further information on Bushfire Recovery Shoalhaven - Shoalhaven City Council

Grow with Google (Event has been cancelled)


In close partnership with local community leaders, the Grow with Google Australia team is hitting the road to bring free digital skills workshops specifically for small businesses to a number of fire-impacted communities throughout New South Wales. 

Workshop training for small business owners covering off the following introductory topics:

  • Setting up a free business profile to help connect with customers when they search for you
  • An introduction to Google Ads to help connect with new customers when they search for what you sell
  • Uncovering insights using a range of products to help guide your business decisions

Following the group session, free 1:1 consultations will also be available with Google Small Business consultants who work day-to-day with small business owners around Australia.

We hope you'll be able to get along to one of the sessions to hear practical tips to improve your business' online presence and meet with one of the Google specialists in a 1:1 consultation.

Consultations can be booked on arrival at the venue. 

Facebook Assistance for Small Business


Did you know that Facebook are offering support to businesses in bushfire affected areas including the Shoalhaven.

  • Dedicated support for fire-affected business owners
  • Facebook business page coaching and advice
  • One on one business consultation with a Facebook Small Business Support Specialist
  • A $200 AUD advertising coupon to help attract more customers
  • Regional workshops in online marketing to help boost fire-affected small businesses
  • Register your interest direct with Facebook on the link below

The Business Bus is coming to Ulladulla

The Business Bus travels across NSW visiting communities to provide information and advice about the support available from the NSW Government to help small businesses to start and grow.  The Business Bus provides support through their team of Business Connect advisers.   

Whether you are just starting out with a great business idea or looking to expand and grow your business, Business Connect services can help you on your journey to business success.

Business Connect is a dedicated and personalised NSW Government program that provides trusted advice to help you start or grow your small business.  

The Business Bus, complete with the Business Connect advisers, are coming to the Shoalhaven. 

Date:     Thursday 09 April 2020
Time:     9:00am to 3:00pm
Venue:  Princes Highway Ulladulla (near BellBrook Arcade)
Registration: Click here to register


Accidental Counsellor Workshops - Nowra & Ulladulla


Supporting the ‘accidental counsellors’

As community members we often find ourselves providing support to friends and neighbours who are experiencing difficulty and emotional stress. We want to help, but how should we respond?

These FREE 1 day workshops aim to provide participants with a practical framework and skill set that enables them to respond with clarity and confidence.

Places for these FREE workshops are limited and registration is essential. Email Louise Roser at or click on link below

Date:     Wednesday 6 May 2020
Time:     9:30am to 4:30pm
Venue:  Milton Ulladulla Ex Servos Club

Date:     Thursday 7 May 2020
Time:     9:30am to 4:30pm
Venue:  QUEST Nowra, 130 Kinghorne Street, Nowra

Milton Aid & Kangaroo Valley Aid - BlazeAid


BlazeAid is  a volunteer-based organisation that works with families and individuals in rural Australia after natural disasters such as fires and floods. Working alongside the rural families, the BlazeAid volunteers help to rebuild fences and other structures that have been damaged or destroyed.

BlazeAid volunteers work in a disaster-affected area for many months, not only helping individuals and families, but also helping rebuild the local communities.

BlazeAid volunteers are currently based in Milton and Kangaroo Valley, helping our community recover from the bushfire disaster.

In the time the organisation has been in the Shoalhaven they have produced:

  • 1, 277 volunteer days
  • cleared 28.8km of fencing
  • re-built 10.55km of fencing across 26 properties.

Nowra Toyota & Illawarra Hino have kindly donated vehicles to Milton Aid and Kangaroo Valley Aid camps allowing BlazeAid volunteers to move larger equipment between locations. Shoalhaven City Councils  Property Unit Manager, Trevor Cronk with the assistance of Economic Development Manager, Greg Pullen, quickly accepted the offer of vehicle assistance and recommended the company donate use of the vehicles to BlazeAid.

Photo courtesy Milton Aid.

  • Click here to find out more about Milton Aid
  • Click here to find out more about Kangaroo Valley Aid



TAFE NSW - Bushfire Relief
Fee Free Short Courses to help Rebuild Communities


In response to the bushfire tragedy in the north and south of the state, TAFE NSW, in conjunction with the NSW Government, is offering a number of fee-free short courses tailored to providing the skills needed to help rebuild devastated communities.

New fee-free Bushfire Relief courses will be added over the coming weeks, but to view current courses offered in Nowra and Ulladulla click on the link below, or call TAFE NSW customer support team on 131 601.


  • Statement of Attainment in Chainsaw Operations - Basic Tree Felling
  • Statement of Attainment in Chainsaw Operations - Trim and Cut
  • Statement of Attainment in Espresso Coffee Making Skills
  • Statement of Attainment in Farm Fencing
  • Statement of Attainment in First Aid 
  • Statement of Attainment in Licence to Operate a Forklift
  • Statement of Attainment in Prepare to Work Safely in the Construction Industry - White Card
  • Statement of Attainment in Restricted - Electrical safety testing of electrical cord connected equipment and cord assemblies
  • Statement of Attainment in Welding (Basic)
  • TAFE Statement in Asbestos Awareness


  • Statement of attainment in Agricultural Chemical Skill Set
  • Statement of Attainment in Espresso Coffee Making Skills
  • Statement of Attainment in Farm Fencing
  • Statement of Attainment in First Aid 
  • Statement of Attainment in Responsible Conduct of Gambling (RCG)
  • TAFE Statement in Asbestos Awareness

Click here to be taken to TAFE NSW Fee Free Courses

Being Human HR


Training is your investment in the future

When it comes to training and development and improving you and your teams’ skills SHORT, SHARP & PUNCHY is best.

Being Human HR has put on their thinking caps and developed a series of practical, informative and dynamic sessions to deliver the maximum impact at the minimum output for you and your people.

Held monthly, the workshops are delivered in 3 hour chunks and are structured in a way that makes it easy to implement quickly back in the workplace.

From dealing with difficult people to accelerating change, working more efficiently and coming up with ideas that give you a sneaky advantage, the way you and your employees think, feel and behave makes a big difference. Sometimes all the difference!


Upcoming workshops include:

  • The High-Performance Team - Friday 3 April 2020 - Shoalhaven City Council
  • Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace - Friday 8 May 2020 - Shoalhaven City Council
  • Effective Communication Skills - Friday 12 June 2020 - Shoalhaven City Council
  • Critical Thinking for Leaders - Friday 10 July 2020 - Shoalhaven City Council
  • Design Thinking for Business - Friday 14 August 2020 - Shoalhaven City Council
  • Essential Skills for Managers & Supervisors - Friday 11 September 2020 - Shoalhaven Council
  • Taking Care of Time Bandits - Friday 9 October 2020 - Shoalhaven City Council

Click here to register for Being Human HR workshops.

Business Connect Advisors


This is an initial FREE mobile business advisory service that is available to all businesses in NSW and subsided by the NSW government. Businesses in bushfire-affected locations may be eligible for fully-subsidised support by our Business Connect Advisors.

A team of highly experienced Advisors are available to meet with you or talk to you by phone if you wish, to discuss your business needs, be that general information or more specific business restructuring and recovery advice and assistance.

Register on the link below, call 1300 134 359 to book a session with a local advisor or call a Business Connect Advisor directly:

  • Narelle Blackadder
    (Business Advisor – Wingecarribee and Shoalhaven LGA’s) on 0407 681 107
  • Andrew Wales
    (Business Advisor – Shoalhaven and Kiama LGA’s) on 0497 832 330

  • Click here to book a session with a Business Connect Advisor

Shoalhaven Business Chamber


The Shoalhaven Business Chamber (SBC) is proud to be an integral part of this region and contribute to its growth via the business community. The Shoalhaven Business Chamber is a membership organisation consisting of members from the business, government, education, and not-for-profit sectors.

The Chamber aims to foster the networking of business owners and managers, give the opportunity to business people to have access to educational opportunities and to lobby the three tiers of Government on issues affecting business sustainability and growth.

Click on the link below to learn more about the Shoalhaven Business Chamber and upcoming events that the Chamber co-ordinates.

  • Click here to be taken to the Shoalhaven Business Chamber website

Shoalhaven Professional Business Association


The Shoalhaven Professional Business Association (spba) are a group of professionals who are passionate about the beautiful Shoalhaven and believe in the future of our businesses in this area.

The spba is a "not for profit" association presently representing the following professions:
Accountants | Architects | Building Consultants | Employment Trainers | Engineers | Lawyers | Surveyors | Town Planners | Valuers.

The spba are constantly seeking interest from businesses employing professional staff and other interested people who share their aim to make the Shoalhaven the number one choice for a professional career.

The spba believes in.

  • More local jobs
  • More education
  • More training
  • More local careers
  • Providing greater choice for the residents of the Shoalhaven

The spba run a number of Business events during the year as follows: 

  • spba Business Breakfast at the Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre at 7:00am
    • Thursday 09 April 2020 (CANCELLED)
    • Thursday 11 June 2020
    • Thursday 13 August 2020 
    • Thursday 08 October 2020
  • Shoalhaven Young Professionals (SYP) Luncheons at 12:00pm
    • Thursday 16 April 2020 - Elephant Thai
    • Tuesday 19 May 2020 - The Hopper Society
    • Wednesday 17 June 2020 - Deli on Kinghorne
    • Wednesday 15 July 2020 - Jellyfish Cafe
    • Tuesday 18 August 2020 - Kohli's Indian Restaurant
    • Wednesday 16 September 2020 - The Dog & Monocle
    • Thursday 25 October 2020 - Ninety One Junction
    • Tuesday 24 November 2020 - Coffee'liscious
  • spba After Hours event at 5:30pm
    • Thursday 14 May 2020 - Drinks at Dog & Monocle
    • Thursday 09 July 2020 - Silos Estate
    • Thursday 10 September 2020 - Shoalhaven Regional Art Gallery
    • Thursday 19 November 2020 - spba Christmas party

Registration is essential to all events via Eventbrite. Click on the link below to learn more about the Shoalhaven Professional Business Association and upcoming events that the Association coordinates.

Milton Ulladulla Business Chamber


The Milton Ulladulla Business Chamber (MUBC) works for business, community and tourism in the Southern Shoalhaven region. The Chamber works with local businesses and engages with the wider community to create opportunities that assist local business to develop and grow providing services that benefit the community.

The Milton Ulladulla Business Chamber is governed by an Executive Committee which is made up of voluntary business owners and community-minded people.  The Committee is here to keep our members informed and act as a business advocate for our local area.

The MUBC work with local businesses and engage with the wider community to create opportunities that assist local business to develop and grow, and provide services that benefit the community.

The MUBC objectives are to:

  • Support community and economic development efforts to aid business development and growth
  • Raise the profile and indentity of the Southern Shoalhaven region
  • Create ongoing opportunities through the stimulation of our local economy
  • Provide networking opportunities for business owners for their mutual benefit
  • Provide sustainable employment through increased services and sustainable tourism.

Click on the link below to learn more about the Milton Ulladulla Business Chamber and upcoming events that the Chamber coordinates.

Basin Business Forum


The Basin Business Forum is a group of local small business owners and representatives sharing ideas, stories and supporting each other over a coffee....

The Basin Business Forum is open to all businesses who have a shared passion in the Bay & Basin who are seeking to make strong network connections.

The Basin Business Forum focuses on making face to face connections at their regular meetings, such as the Basin Business Brekky which is held on the second Tuesday of each month at the Straight to the Point Cafe, Sanctuary Point

Click on the link below to learn more about the Basin Business Forum and upcoming events that the Forum coordinates.

  • Click here to be taken to the Basin Business Forum website


Economic Development Office

Contact the Economic Development Office on telephone: 02 4429 3388 to speak with:

  • Greg Pullen – Economic Development Manager
  • Marianne Jones – Economic Development Officer
  • Sally Bacon – Economic Development Administration Officer

Click here to access Shoalhaven City Council Economic Development Website