The Barwon South Western (BSW) Region covers south eastern Victoria and is bounded by Lara to the east and the border of South Australia to the west. It is geographically diverse including the larger regional centres of Geelong and Warrnambool as well as coastal and inland towns and rural communities.
Approximately 341,419 people live in the region. Close to 60 % live in Geelong, the largest regional city in Victoria. The rest of the population lives in the regional centre of Warrnambool, the larger regional towns of Colac, Hamilton, Portland and Torquay and in the many costal and inland towns and communities.
Barwon South Western contains eight municipalities:
Regional Ethnic Communities’ Councils/Migrant Resource Centres:
Diversity in the Region
While regional municipalities generally have a high proportion of Anglo-Australian residents, BSW actually has the largest proportion of residents born in main non-English speaking countries (NESCs) (5 per cent) and speaking a LOTE at home (six per cent) of all the Regional Advisory Councils, with most other municipalities in the region having only around two per cent of LOTE speaking residents and similar proportions born in one of the main NESCs. Italian is the most widely spoken LOTE in the region, with over 3,000 speakers, or 0.9 per cent of the population. Other languages with more than 1,000 speakers include Croatian (2,422) and German, Macedonian and Greek (each around 1,200).
The general population and LOTE speakers have quite different age profiles within the Barwon-South Western region. The largest age group for English speakers is the 0–24 group, followed by the 45–64 (baby-boomer generation), 25–44 and last of all the 65 plus group. LOTE speakers are not numerous as any age, and as Figure 6 makes clear their numbers however around 5,000 speakers for each age group.
Language spoken at home, Barwon-South West
Prepared by OMAC with special tables from ABS 2006 Census (July 2011).
Country of birth, Barwon-South West
*Includes Inadequately Described, At Sea, Not Elsewhere Classified.
Prepared by OMAC with special tables from ABS 2006 Census (July 2011
Proficiency in Spoken English in the Barwon-South West, Victoria, 2006 Census
*Minor differences in population totals between the tables are due to the need to assign a value of '0' or '3' to cases where the cell count is less than 3 in order to maintain confidentiality.
Population growth in the area
The population of Barwon South West is projected to grow by around 90,000 between 2006 and 2026 (from 355,000 to 445,000) and at a higher rate than the regional Victoria average. The strongest growth is likely to occur in Geelong, Warrnambool and Torquay, with steady growth also expected in Ocean Grove, Colac, Camperdown, Portland and Hamilton. Most of these locations have hinterland settlements that rely on the larger centres for some business and community services. However, the smaller settlements themselves, such as Terang and Winchelsea, are also focal points for retailing, services and recreation for surrounding areas.
Portland, Warrnambool, Port Fairy and Torquay are likely to continue to grow strongly as favoured residential and service locations, although further west an ageing population is projected to reduce growth rates. As in other regions, much of this growth will come from migration, with around 61,000 people expected to make the move to the region over the next 20 years – two-thirds of projected population growth.
The region’s population structure is ageing at a rate 10% higher than the Victorian and Australian averages. It is anticipated that the proportion of people aged 65 or older is likely to increase from 21% in 2001 to 37% by 2051. The region’s population aged 75 years and over is projected to rise from 7.9 per cent in 2006 to 15.4 per cent in 2036.
This population ageing will be offset by Geelong’s ability to offer employment, education and lifestyle options that will help in attracting and retaining young people. The region’s projected population age structure and anticipated inbound migration will also amplify the need for acceptance and appreciation of people of all abilities, cultures, ethnicities, ages, sexual orientation and gender.
Useful information links for the Barwon South Western Region
|Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 May 2013 10:09|