Get spending and be app-y

Caitlyn WattsPilbara News
Karratha councillor Evette Smeathers, Chamber of Commerce office manager Carla Stafford and events coordinator Kristina Delahunt.
Camera IconKarratha councillor Evette Smeathers, Chamber of Commerce office manager Carla Stafford and events coordinator Kristina Delahunt. Credit: Caitlyn Watts/Pilbara News

Each household within the City of Karratha has been promised a $100 voucher to be spent at a local business to help reboot the economy after COVID-19 restrictions.

The Try Local initiative was created in partnership with the Karratha and Districts Chamber of Commerce and Industry and will provide about 8500 households within the city with $100 Try Local vouchers to use locally via a mobile phone application.

KDCCI chief executive Tanya Dodd said it was a fantastic way to support local businesses.

“We are just really excited. It should be at full capacity by August,” she said.

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“It is making it more modern. People lose vouchers all the time. Whereas if it’s kept on your phone, the likelihood of you losing your phone is pretty minor.

“We can also in time use the app for people that come here for tourism and they can download it and they will be able to go to any of the merchants in town and be able to find businesses easily.”

Mountway Finance principal Jordan Ralph said Try Local was beneficial to a range of local businesses, including his.

“It is good exposure and it gives people a bit of cash to spend with local businesses particularly,” he said.

“I think the fact that the City of Karratha are putting money into this means this stimulus is going to be spent on local businesses. There is a benefit to all and being in the mix is good.”

Karratha Mayor Peter Long said the initiative was part of the City’s tranche two COVID-19 support funding worth $1.3 million.

“Local government has a role to play in supporting ratepayers, local businesses and community groups during these unprecedented and challenging times,” he said.

Development of the Try Local app was funded by Rio Tinto.

Rio’s Cape Lambert operations manager Vanessa Forster said the funding would encourage the community to spend locally. “As a local resident, I’m looking forward to seeing the app in action,” she said.

Additional COVID-19 support initiatives from the City of Karratha included business grants, fee waivers and tourism incentives.

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