The Hills & Districts Chamber of Commerce December eNewsletter
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Welcome to The Hills & District Chamber of Commerce Inc. - a friendly and supportive business group bridging the Ferny Hills, Arana Hills, Ferny Grove, Keperra, Mitchelton and surrounding districts. Established in 1992, our Chamber is not-for-profit and is affiliated with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland.
If you are involved in a business or community group and live or work in the Hills Districts, why not register for the next meeting - new members and visitors are always welcome.
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And that's a wrap...

Thank you to all who attended our annual Christmas and Awards evening and congratulations to the award recipients in recognition of your outstanding efforts in 2020.

Wishing you all a safe and restful Christmas and a prosperous New Year. 

Mitchelton State High School Awards

Our connections with local schools are highly valued by the Chamber, especially given that they are educating tomorrow’s business leaders. One of the ways we support is by sponsoring various academic awards for students. Donna Thistlethwaite represented the Chamber at the Mitchelton State High School Awards night on 18 November 2020, presenting the Hills and Districts Chamber of Commerce Prizes for Business Technology for students in years 10 and 12. Congratulations to Rosita Rokobuli and to Hongshan Qian on achieving these awards. It was wonderful to see so many students recognised over the evening.

Student award recipients (L to R) Hongshan Qian, Rosita Rokobuli

It is 2021 and it is our time! 

It is time for us to own this post 2020 space, take where we are right now and remember what we already knew and acted on with courage, conviction and confidence.
Book now!


Mary Di Marco

This year has been a strange one. Full of “once in a lifetime” issues, when 2020 commenced I remember thinking thank goodness 2019 was at an end, it had been a difficult year in many ways. Little did I know what 2020 would bring forth.
In January the Executive met to set the agenda of goals and ideas for the year. By the beginning of March all of these were “out the door”. Face to Face meetings were cancelled. We made the decision to set up “Tuesday Check In”  Zoom meetings on a weekly basis, as lock-down had set in our aim was to ensure that all members felt “connected” to a group other than their household.
It was at this time I saw what a fabulous group we have on the Executive. Within 2 weeks Hayley Lingard had set up our own chamber zoom room. The first zoom meeting was held in Ingrid’s for which we were most appreciative.
Donna Thistlethwaite contacted and secured wonderful speakers for our monthly meetings. We invited other local chambers to join in our zoom sessions. Your Executive took turns in hosting these events and ensured the load was evenly shared. Your Executive team were also family members and were juggling home schooling, working from home, adjusting their house, income and client contact to fit in with the need for the chamber to stay relevant and they fitted the Chamber work into the Government guidelines which at times were changing.
After June, we decided to revert to monthly meetings, the weekly contact had served its purpose. In August we held our “Meet the Candidates” meeting which was the first breakfast meeting since February. Thank you to Brian Battersby and his hardworking team who put together a wonderfully informative event with Ian Skippen as the MC.
In October we participated in the Business Expo at Rothwell. The first such event for businesses to socialise, network and it was a huge success. Thank you to everyone who volunteered to work on our stand for the day. Thank you also to John Hudson for the new Stand. It’s a beauty. 
I believe moving forward we will approach 2021 a far more resourceful and stronger community. Working towards common goals and to assist our Not For Profits, which really need our support in these difficult times.
Thank you all for your support, to the executive for your hard work and I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a safe and happy Festive Season. I look forward to seeing you again in 2021 with renewed energy and a desire to succeed in all your undertakings.  Stay safe and Merry Christmas.  Mary

Vice President

Donna Thistlethwaite

Thanks to everyone who joined us for last week’s Christmas party. It was wonderful to catch up in person and to celebrate the ups and downs of 2020 with Chamber friends.

I’m super grateful that we have been able to resume face to face meetings and loved hearing from two of our long term chamber members, Molly Brumm and Michelle O’Hara, at our November breakfast.  As they shared their ‘Unforeseen Silver Linings’ it became clear that a focus on serving our customers inevitably leads to business success and growth. Thank you for your wonderful insights Michelle and Molly.

We are going to be kicking off 2021 with a bang! The amazing Julie Cross will present at breakfast on 19 January 2021. You are in for a treat but don’t just take my word for it, you can see Julie out in action in this video.
Julie is a masterful storyteller, inspiring change-maker and one of the most inspiring keynote speakers in Australia. She combines powerful insights into human behaviour with practical strategies that will leave you with powerful tools for living your best life and setting a higher standard in all aspects of your existence. Let’s start 2021 right. Rally together a group of your friends for a spectacular morning. Bookings can be made via the Chamber website.
Finally, I wish you and your families the most wonderful festive season and look forward to reconnecting with you in 2021.  Donna


Stuart Jaeschke

Financial reports for the month ended 30 November 2020.



Hayley Lingard

Farewell 2020… 
Wishing you, your family and your business a safe and merry festive season and I look forward to seeing you in 2021!
As the year wraps up I hope you all find the time to reflect on what worked well for you this year and what maybe didn’t. It’s such a pivotal time as we look to learn some important lessons for the new year ahead of us. 
Michelle and Molly’s presentation at our recent breakfast was a lovely way to highlight that no matter what 2020 looked like, I hope you too have some silver linings and learnings just waiting to be uncovered. Thank you to both ladies for sharing your experiences and learnings with us!
I would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and sincerely thank all the Executive Committee members for their commitment and magnificent ability to run with the punches throughout the 2020 year. Special mention goes to our President, Mary Di Marco for her leadership and passion; and also to Stuart, Donna and Brian for their professionalism, passion and consistency. I have enjoyed working alongside all of you and thank you for your support in what has been a trying year in many ways!
It was great to see so many members and guests at our Christmas/End of Year event. This included members of our Not-For-Profit community and I pleased to advise that we raised just over $300 that we have already donated to our nominated charities. A big thanks to our local, State and Federal members, Tim Mander, Mark Furner, Peter Dutton and Matt Constance, as well as, John Hudson from Flametree Financial for kindly donating our lucky door prizes. 
In 2021 we look forward to events coming back in strength in order to foster more connection and opportunity for our members. We have got some exciting speakers lining up already so be sure to book your ticket to our breakfast events. Please remember that this will need to be done in a timely manner as the cut off still needs to be in advance for COVID catering purposes. 
Our memberships continues to grow and I’d like to warmly welcome our new members - 
  • Richard Oddo - Charter Hall, Arana Hills Plaza
  • Donna Leach, Virtual Assistant
  • Mark Forbes, South Pacific Wave Pty Ltd
  • Jim Ferguson,  A-Thai-5 Restaurant & Takeaway
  • Troy Colliver, The Bold Horticulturalist
  • Anne-Maree Bennett, Ozone Health Solutions
Wishing you all a safe and merry festive season and see you in 2021!  Hayley

Advocacy Committee

Chair | Brian Battersby

Business confidence is improving surveys say, as our year 2020 draws to a close.  However, many businesses still have a way to go to get on the front foot again.

2020 year Advocacy activities were called on more than ever, as numerous meetings by Zoom or Teams to keep going and at safe distances.

Some great results through our Local Government involvement via Brisbane and Moreton with business fee/licence reductions and procurement changes aimed to support small/local suppliers.

Then via our partnership with CCIQ both small and medium businesses now have direct lines of communication into State and Australian Government’s areas with some successes already. However the State Payroll tax further deferral we lobbied for, we believe is a missed opportunity from the 1st December State budget. This could significantly impact those businesses triggered by payroll in the 2021 year ahead.
The new Queensland Government treasurer Cameron Dick, handed down his first Budget on Tues 1st December 2020, click here to read more.  

An appraisal by CCIQ of the 1/12/2020 State Budget here, and they say "they were underwhelmed by this State Budget for business". To read the CCIQ Budget media release, click here.

Finally, as Advocacy Committee Chair, I wish to thank all Committee members for their timely efforts in advocating across many areas for the Chamber, while running their own businesses at the same time. Thanks to Vanessa Robson Petch, Leigh Willson, Michael Pecic, Chris Lehmann, Peter Martin, and a potential new interested member Craig Meinicke.
For everyone’s information Brian Battersby now has a dedicated Email address for all Chamber matters, effective from 1/12/20 which is   
I offer a phone number correction from my November 2020 Newsletter, as I used a prior Ferny Grove Electorate Phone number for Minister Mark Furner MP. 

The correct phone number for his Ferny Grove office is Ph 3535 7100.
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