We LIVE Here card

Published on 23 August 2022


Buy local initiative We LIVE Here cards have cracked the magical million mark with more than $1 million in funds loaded onto the cards since its inception.

The joint initiative started in 2018 by Upper Hunter Shire and Muswellbrook councils as a direct response to the drought and its impacts on the communities.

Upper Hunter Shire Council mayor Maurice Collison said he was proud that the councils had hit such a big milestone.

"This little initiative has had a big impact on our communities," he said.

"It has helped farmers throughout the drought and now continues to help our local community by keeping money local.

"The cards are regularly used in employee ‘thank you’ programs with a high turnover each Christmas in particular.  Not only does this support keep investment in the Muswellbrook and Upper Hunter Shires, but it also ensures there is no stigma to the card which could have been a birthday gift, employer thank you or provided as financial relief by a charity."

Muswellbrook Shire Council mayor Steve Reynolds said Council was pleased to have joined forces with the Upper Hunter Shire to support the card since its inception in 2018.

“It is true when they say 'from little things big things grow' and to reach the $1million mark in funds loaded on to the We LIVE Here card proves it," he said.

"An idea that started off as a way for townspeople to support our farming communities has now grown into an important and practical way of also supporting local businesses.

“I want to congratulate local employers, especially the mining companies, and including council itself, who continue to use the  card as a gift to employees, which ensures circular spending, and the local businesses and organisations who have had the foresight to  support the gift card concept."    

The achievement makes the ‘We LIVE Here’ program one of the most successful delivered through Why Leave Town who produce the cards for over 80 communities.

Program Manager Ashley Watt said “the We Live Here Gift Card Program was extremely effective in providing financial support during the peak of the drought and has continued to help stimulate the local Upper Hunter and Muswellbrook economy since."

"In particular, local businesses and organisations have really embraced the concept and this has really helped drive the value of loaded cards past the $1million mark”.