Following the devastating bushfires of 2019, many of us had looked forward to a less eventful year, however 2020 was not all that we had hoped, bringing the unprecedented challenges of COVID-19 with its social and economic impacts.
While our region has weathered floods, droughts and bushfires, COVID-19 has brought on a unique set of circumstances for our community that has tested our adaptability and our determination to overcome.
One of the great lessons of this COVID-19 year has been the importance of family, friends and the need for strong community connections. Although, the great irony of COVID-19 has been that the best way we could stick together was to maintain a little distance to keep everyone safe.
As we emerge from the restrictions of COVID-19, many of us have a new appreciation of being able to connect with family and friends in social situations. This will make this festive season even more special.
The events of this year have reminded us of the importance of pausing to take time and reflect on what is most important in life. This Christmas, especially, we are reminded of the great gift we have in our families and communities.
The way we treat each other and communicate with one another says a great deal about the character that we bring to our community. This year has shown us that this is a time for open hearts and open minds.
I have been proud of the way individuals, business operators and members of community across our region have pulled together to support one another through a very difficult year. I have been impressed by the innovation shown by so many in adapting to the challenges of COVID-19 while continuing our community’s bushfire recovery journey.
Whatever your plans for the Christmas-New Year period, Denise and I would like to wish you and your loved ones an enjoyable time of fellowship and that you are looking forward to, as much as we are, the best that 2021 can bring.