This section provides information for businesses, and links to information and support available, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Business Mentorship Program
We’ve launched a new mentorship program for local businesses.
Expressions of Interest for businesses have now closed for 2022.
What is involved?
The program will provide bespoke, 1:1 mentorship with industry experts, to help you develop a clear future path for your business.
The program is designed to help local businesses build resilience and sustainability. And each business will be able to tailor the program to suit their specific needs.
The program is completely free and will run for 12 months, with the possibility of being extended.
Who can apply?
All local Blue Mountains businesses are invited to apply. If you operate within the Blue Mountains LGA – whether you’re new or established, small or large – this mentorship program is for you.
There are 40 places available, including 20 specifically for tourism-focussed businesses, secured through a partnership with Blue Mountains Tourism.
How can I apply?
Expressions of Interest for businesses have been extended until 24 July 2022!
You will need Adobe (Acrobat or Reader) to complete the fillable PDF Forms.
To use the PDF fillable forms, on PC or MAC:
- Open the form in Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader. This means you may need to save it to you desktop, right click > open with > Adobe (Acrobat or Reader). All fillable fields and signature box will be active and be able to be completed.
- If you open the form in a new tab in your internet browser – STOP. You will not be able to fill in the PDF form correctly and we may NOT be able to see any information you have entered. You will most likely be unable to sign the form as well, in this mode.
- Get information on how to set up an electronic signature for PDF documents
Why is Council running this program?
The impact of bushfires, floods and the COVID-19 pandemic over the last 2.5 years have been devastating to local businesses.
The impact to the tourism industry have been particularly severe, as identified in the Tourism Industry Profile 2021 (REMPLAN), and include a 40% drop in visitation, $118 million loss of direct revenue and an estimated 600 jobs lost in the industry.
In recognition of these challenges, Council has sought and secured funding for programs to assist local businesses to recover, build resilience and sustainability. A stronger local economy is critical for the Blue Mountains, providing local jobs and amenities.
More information and questions
For more information, or if you have questions, please contact David Somerville (Program Leader Economic Development) at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 0457 152 554.
This program is being funded by:
- Bushfire Local Economic Recovery Fund: This Local Economic Recovery project is jointly funded by the Commonwealth and the New South Wales Government under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements.
- Building Better Regions Fund (Round 5): This project is funded by the Commonwealth under the Building Better Regions Fund program.
Mental health and wellbeing
The uncertainty around how long restrictions will last can be one of the more stressful factors surrounding lockdowns and restrictions. If you, or your staff are distressed and need wellbeing support, a number of support services are available.
24/7 telephone services
Online services and resources
NewAccess by Beyond Blue – Free and confidential help for small business owners from mental health coaches with a small business background.
Council and the Ahead for Business team at Everymind, have partnered to support the mental wellbeing of Blue Mountains based businesses. The Ahead for Business online portal provides resources for small business owners to help you get to know your mental health, understand your wellbeing status, and identify areas for action and support with personalised results and recommendations.
Council is also here to support you. Contact Council if you would like to speak to a team member about these support services.
Assistance with rental negotiations
The Blackheath Chamber of Commerce, Leura Village Association and Katoomba Chamber of Commerce have worked together to write a form letter which businesses may use for approaching their landlord. It is an easy-to-use template in a Word document and can be amended to suit your business and situation. You can contact the Council's Economic Development Team or one of the organisations listed above to get a copy.