Western Downs Futures



Western Downs Futures is a place based collaborative impact strategy for the Western Downs Region.

It is being led by community and industry stakeholders, with local and state government support to enable progress for the region. 

Western Downs Regional Council are proud to support this collaborative place-based initiative.  


How We Work


These are our early stage governance arrangements, as agreed by the Progress Team on 8 August 2023. 

Early Stage Governance Arrangements 080823.png

2023 Prospectus 

The Prospectus contains all of the agreed in-principle arrangements that the Western Downs Futures Progress Team worked to develop up to October 2023. 

Click Here to view the Western Downs Futures Prospectus(PDF, 44MB)

10 Year Roadmap 

Using the principles developed by FSG Collective Impact Forum, we created a 10 Year Roadmap for Western Downs Futures.

A 2 Year Action Plan is also on the second page of this roadmap, which is a work in progress for further changes in 2024. 

Click here to view the 10 Year Roadmap and 2 Year Action Plan(PDF, 2MB)


Progress Team Meetings

Approximately 30 participants at the Summit expressed their interest to carry the work forward as part of the 'Progress Team'.

Meeting #1 | 5 June 2023

The First Progress Team meeting was convened on 5 June 2023 to continue the dialogue around regional collaboration.

This meeting aimed to (1) revisit some key concepts from the Summit, (2) share new information and examples of collaborative partnership governance arrangements, (3) provide activities that enabled participants to start to experience real collaboration and decision-making in practice, whilst starting to land some key elements of the work.

Click here to view or download the meeting summary.(PDF, 2MB) 

Working Group Meetings | July 2023

Two working groups were formed to finalise the Vision Statement, Principles and Governance Design for our place-based strategy. 

These groups met in July with the objective to take back their work to the Progress Team meeting #2. 

Click here to view or download the Vision Statement Working Group meeting summary(PDF, 571KB)

Click here to view or download the Governance Design Working Group meeting summary(PDF, 2MB)  

Meeting #2 | 8 August 2023

The second Progress Team meeting was held on Tuesday 8 August 2023 at the Tara Soldiers Memorial Hall.

This meeting aimed to (1) continue learning from other examples of place-based change initiatives, (2) review the work that was progressed by the 2 x working group's established at the previous progress team meeting, (3) continue design work on the governance structure, principles and vision.

Click here to view or download the meeting summary.(PDF, 2MB)

Meeting #3 | 17 October 2023

The third Progress Team meeting was held on Tuesday 17 October 2023 at the Chinchilla RSL.

This meeting aimed to (1) continue to deepen the understanding about what is needed for genuine collaboration, (2) create a shared understanding and language on how to hold multiple perspectives in shared decision making, role and authority, and to (3) finalise input on principles.

A project plan working group was formed at this meeting to submit a funding application to Advance Queensland as a step towards standing up an initiative under the Western Downs Futures.

Click here to view or download the meeting summary.(PDF, 3MB)

Meeting #4 | 20 February 2024

The fourth Progress Team meeting was on Tuesday 20 February 2024 at the Dalby Events Centre.

This meeting aimed to (1) provide a progress update on funding applications, (2) activate the leadership component of the governance arrangements, (3) action planning for the incoming program manager and leadership team, and (4) establish working groups.

Click here to view or download the meeting summary.(PDF, 3MB)

Interim Steering Committee Meetings

Meeting summaries to be available here soon.


Western Downs Futures Summit

The Western Downs Regional Futures Summit was held from the 3-5 May 2023, at the Dalby Events Centre. It was attended by 102 people from the community, local industry, services, and government stakeholders.

Collaboration for Impact consultants facilitated the workshop with the following objectives: 

  • To strengthen collaboration by building on the existing partnering and collaboration across the region 
  • To leverage the diversity of the communities across the region to maximise outcomes for all 
  • To develop a shared understanding of what it will take to make things better across the region
  • To define what we need to continue to discuss and how we will govern this at this early stage 

Summary of Event - Key Insights

Click the image below to view or download the Key Insights document.

Summary of Key Insights 4 5 May.JPG(PDF, 5MB)

Summit Storyboard

Click the image below to view or download the storyboard.

Storyboard.JPG(PDF, 13MB)



Western Downs Regional Council helped to collated data around the liveability of the region as part of the Western Downs Regional Futures Summit, providing insights on population, housing, employment, education, economy, health, crime, and more in the Western Downs.

You can view this data in full, and download the document, at the link below.

Click here to view the Western Downs Liveability Data(PDF, 809KB)



Western Downs Futures has initiated a number of co-designed collaborative projects, and supported a number of key wins for the region, details of which, and supporting documents, can be found below. 

Early Wins

Some of the early wins from the Western Downs Futures Group include: 

Queensland Police Service

  • 18 police and ancillary staff are being recruited to the region. 

Local Housing Action Plan 

  • The Department of Housing fast-tracked the Local Housing Action Plan for our region with Local Government Association of Queensland and Western Downs Regional Council, with input and support from the Western Downs Futures. 

Department of Corrective Services

  • Have increased presence in the Tara region since the Futures Summit. Corrections are also working with WDRC on establishing an office and a permanent staff member in the Tara region. 

Skilling Queenslanders for Work Program 

  • Western Downs Regional Council in partnership with Tara Shire State College and Tara Neighbourhood Centre were successful in their funding application with DYJESBT to provide 10 traineeship and upskilling opportunities for jobseekers in Tara.

Support Finder Launch 

  • Through our partners in Western Downs Futures Western Downs Regional Council, Queensland Police Service, and Darling Downs Health joined forces to launch an online support directory for Western Downs residents in need. Check it out: SupportFinder.org.au

Health Workforce 

  • 10 more General Practitioners are being recruited to the region. 

Shape Your Energy Future Leadership Program 

  • 7 members of the Progress Team were successfully selected to attend the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation's "Shape Your Energy Future" program on 5-9 February. 

Local Housing Action Plan

Local Housing Action Plan 

In partnership with the Department of Housing, Local Government Association of Queensland, and Western Downs Regional Council, the Local Housing Action Plan ("LHAP") was endorsed in February 2024. Western Downs Futures will support monitoring and evaluation of the collective impact of initiatives under the LHAP. 

Click the image below to view or download the document 

Capture LHAP front page.PNG(PDF, 3MB)

CRISP Initiative

CRISP Initiative 

The Collective Recruitment, Integration and Sustainable Placement(PDF, 2MB) (CRISP) Initiative was co-developed with the Progress Team members aimed at attracting individuals to our region, integrating them into our local community, and addressing the critical issue of workforce skill gaps in local industries. Rather than simply increasing job numbers in the region, CRISP focused on effectively filling the persistent job vacancies in the region. 

(PDF, 2MB) CRISP Initiative A3 one pager.png

Skilling Queenslanders for Work

Skilling Queenslanders for Work 

10 jobseekers in the Tara region completed the foundational job skills training in January 2024 delivered in partnership between Tara Shire State College, Tara Neighbourhood Centre, and Western Downs Regional Council, funded by the Department of Small Business and Training. 


Get Involved

There are so many ways you can be involved in ground-breaking community-led, place-based change happening in the Western Downs. 

If you or your organisation are keen to get involved and help us shape the future of our region, we want to hear from you!

Tell us who you (or your organisation) are, and how you would like to get involved with Western Downs Futures.

Once your email has been received you can expect us to get in touch with you within 7 business days to arrange a meeting or further discussion.

Click here to get in touch and get involved!