The diversity of Ballarat and its residents will be front and centre as a campaign challenges old stereotypes and delves into what makes the community special.
While Ballarat has often been defined by its rich history, Committee for Ballarat’s More than Gold campaign is shifting the focus from the gold rush and heritage to liveability through the telling of unique stories from its residents.
Committee for Ballarat’s Robyn Reeves said the campaign hoped to change the way the region is viewed by capturing what Ballarat has to offer and unveiling what it is that draws people to live, work, study and invest in the community.
Committee for Ballarat has already collated a range of stories, which took place in November and December last year, with the hope of presenting them in a number of ways including a coffee table book and eBook and social media campaign.
The stories cover all members of the community, from long-term residents and senior citizens to new arrivals and younger demographics.
The campaign looks to offer a sense of pride and celebration, while helping to assist the induction of new residents.
Ms Reeves said the campaign would also highlight the importance of culture and social connectedness for people living in the region and the opportunities available.
“It’s really about saying while Ballarat has a tremendous history that includes the gold rush and some amazing attributes that relate to that, we have so much more than gold,” she said.
“We can actually use the stories both to ensure that people who live in Ballarat have a real sense of pride in their community and an awareness of the opportunities that are there for them, but also that it is a story we can tell to people who don’t live in Ballarat and who may wish to move here, travel here or to invest here.”
The Courier will be publishing a series of Ballarat stories to coincide with the campaign, capturing the journeys of everyone from young sports stars and entrepreneurs to established artists and chief executives.