Stronger Country Communities Fund Outcome and Economic Evaluation
Rounds One and Two of the Stronger Country Communities Fund (SCCF) delivered significant social and economic benefits for regional NSW communities.
In Rounds One and Two of the SCCF program, $284.8 million for small-scale social infrastructure such as town halls, playgrounds and sports facilities in regional communities, was distributed through local councils to every single local government area in regional NSW.
Regional NSW’s Economic Evaluation found that the SCCF improved the amenity and liveability of communities through the provision of quality social infrastructure and had collective impacts above and beyond individual project impacts by:
enhancing community pride, connection and ambition
advancing community wellbeing, resilience and prosperity
increasing social equity outcomes across and within regional communities.
A cost benefit analysis found that Rounds One and Two of the SCCF achieved an estimated net economic benefit of $520 million for NSW and returned $2 for every $1 invested.
The Economic Evaluation found that amenity delivered through improved quality of and access to facilities and services was the largest component of the economic benefit for the program. The Economic Evaluation also demonstrated that SCCF contributed to other significant economic benefits, including educational outcomes and travel savings for regional people and communities.
These evaluation findings will inform improvements to future rounds of the SCCF program and other relevant Regional Growth programs administered by the Regional NSW.