The council has harnessed online tools from Zoom to Facebook Live as it reaches out to the community in new ways as a result of COVID-19.
It comes as community engagement pop-up sessions in shopping centres, for example, are off the table due to the health pandemic.
Port Macquarie-Hastings Council's group manager of community Lucilla Marshall said the council was trying different and new ways to engage with the community.
Ms Marshall said the online platforms had ended up meaning the council could reach more people in a different way.
A Facebook Live Q&A on the council's operational plan reached 10,000 people.
There have been live Facebook feeds about topics such as weeds and the coastal management plan.
Community feedback is vital in the development of the Think2050 Community Strategic Plan.
The plan will reflect the aspirations and priorities of our community into the future.
The community engagement process involves Think2050 Zoom focus group sessions and the use of an online interactive tool with real-time feedback.
There is also a youth and schools program, including virtual youth summits, as well as a FutureThink summit which is set to include an interactive online component and an event with limited numbers and social distancing.
Ms Marshall said after the FutureThink summit, there would be two round table sessions, probably in the virtual space.
She encouraged people to get involved in the council's community engagement, particularly around the Community Strategic Plan.
Ms Marshall said people still really wanted to get involved.
"They may have some more time to get involved as well," she said.
"We previously had thought people weren't as savvy with their internet and using different types of tools as they actually are."
Online community engagement has other benefits too.
"If we put something online, we can then share it more as opposed to a community meeting where it is a one-off and it is done," Ms Marshall said.
"It doesn't take away the fact that people still want to have those face-to-face conversations and I think Zoom is really helping that because you can see people and it's a bit more face-to-face."
Ms Marshall said she thought the council would continue to engage with the community in the digital space as well as face-to-face in the long-term.
There has been some face-to-face engagement, when the COVID-19 rules allowed, with fewer than 10 people and practising social distancing.
But Ms Marshall said people were more reluctant to come together since the second coronavirus wave hit in Victoria.
"We are just being very mindful of the age groups, as a lot of people who often came to our face to faces were of an older demographic, and now we are seeing we are getting different demographics through online, but we are still getting older groups," she said.
Ms Marshall said the team was looking at different ways to use the digital space.
The council has also launched a Facebook group called Engage PMH.
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