A GROUND-BREAKING plan to generate lasting reconciliation between the black and white people of Yamba will be a hot topic of discussion at the April 2 meeting of the Yamba Chamber of Commerce.
Before it even gets off the ground though, the Yamba Chamber of Commerce president Graham Lees said if endorsed by the chamber the sticking point to implementing the plan could be funding.
The Reconcileyamba three-year plan, developed by former Clarence Valley community development officer Pip Parsonson, hopes to introduce a broad spectrum of community, cultural, educational and economic development strategies including youth recreation and support services, arts and cultural development, information and referral and networking services, therapeutic programs and vocation, and education and training initiatives.
Mr Parsonson said the plan, which will be administered from Yamba's Ngaru Village, will deliver lasting positive change for Yamba.
"Reconcileyamba aims to deliver a sharp reduction in juvenile offending, a reduction in young adults offending, an improvement in school attendance and retention rates, improved study and employment outcomes for young Goories, improved sense of individual safety and community well-being throughout Yamba, an increase in Aboriginal arts, economic activity in the area, and an increased engagement between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Yamba communities," he said.
Chamber president Graham Lees said in his opinion the plan offered great merit for Yamba, but in the current economic climate he said securing the required funding of $700,000 over three years could be the sticking point that stops the plan being implemented.
"I think in the current circumstances all things should be considered," he said.
"I don't know whether it will happen but I think it could really help.
"The funding will obviously be the biggest hurdle and it's likely it will be the biggest stopping point.
"Many a good cause gets thwarted by lack of funding."
Mr Lees said he sent Mr Parsonson's draft plan to members last week so they could get up to speed with the details of the plan before the April 2 meeting.
He said chamber members would get an opportunity to hear Mr Parsonson talk about the plan before they took a stance as a chamber to either support or oppose the plan.
"We will be discussing the chamber's position at the following week's meeting of the executive committee to gauge the reaction of members and consider whether the chamber will endorse the plan."