Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Colac babies are booming

Colac Otway Shire Council is reporting a surge in baby births in the last financial year, up 14.3% on the previous year, with families in the region welcoming 239 babies.

Council says the largest percentage increase in birth notifications received was from the Wye River, Separation Creek, Apollo Bay to Johanna region, with 31 babies taking the area total up 55% on the previous year. There have also been 12 birth notices from the Cororooke area, up from eight in the previous financial year.

“Our Maternal and Child Health team has done a wonderful job in what has been challenging circumstances with the changing COVID restrictions,” said Council chief executive officer Anne Howard.

“They have been a steadying presence in families’ lives when other factors have been less reliable.”

Ms Howard said it was unknown at this stage whether the increase in birth notifications for 2021-22 was a one-off occurrence, or whether it was the start of a baby boom.

“We know that during COVID many families migrated from the city out to regional areas looking for more space and freedom for their children,” said Ms Howard.

“Colac Otway is a wonderful place to raise a family and it’s encouraging to see that more people are looking at our area of the world as an attractive place to live and work.

“Growth in working-age demographics is good for communities, because it supports local businesses, schools and clubs.

“We warmly welcome all of our new babies and look forward to seeing them grow and thrive in the Colac Otway Shire,” said Ms Howard.

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