SMILES ALL AROUND: Positivity is catching on in Warwick, as winners were announced for the Messages of Love and Hope campaign.
SMILES ALL AROUND: Positivity is catching on in Warwick, as winners were announced for the Messages of Love and Hope campaign.

Warwick to benefit from thousands of dollars in prizes

THOUSANDS of dollars will be pumped back into the Warwick economy during a period of significant downturn, thanks to a #shoplocal initiative spearheaded by the Warwick Chamber of Commerce.

The Messages of Love and Hope campaign came to an end this weekend as WCC vice-president Julia Keogh "played Santa", delivering vouchers of up to $1000 to 21 Warwick businesses and their customers, rewarding them for their support.

"It really did feel like Christmas in July!" Ms Keogh said.

The initiative aimed to support Warwick-owned businesses while creating a sense of social connectedness, and Ms Keogh said it had proved a resounding success, receiving over 700 entries and reports of increased foot traffic.

More valuable than money, however, may be the 357 encouraging messages of support shoppers shared with the community.

These messages, entwined through the trees of Palmerin St over the month of July, painted a picture of a town united through adversity.

"The messages called for the community to stay positive, to support each other, and to continue to build resilience," Ms Keogh said.

"We'll all get through this together."

Recipients of the vouchers will continue to be announced on the WCC Facebook until 6pm this evening, and thus far have included shoppers from The Scoop, Stephanie's Lingerie and Emporium Lane, to name a few.

The chamber will then turn its attention towards tourism, proactively seeking funding in order to play their part in promoting the beautiful region.

"It's something that is really close to our hearts," Ms Keogh said.

"We're passionate about our town, and our region, and we've seen that the Chamber of Commerce can be a really positive voice when it comes to the tourism sector."