The Shoalhaven Women's Wellness Festival has been disbanded.
Members of the organising committee have made the difficult decision to no longer hold the festival.
Members have agreed unanimously to end the annual event that has brought greater awareness of women's health and wellbeing to the local Shoalhaven community since 2012.
The 2020 festival would have been the eighth time the Shoalhaven community has come together to support women's wellness, with an army of volunteers having dedicated their time to what has become an annual celebration of women's physical and mental health and wellbeing.
The decision to end the festival planning has been a difficult one.
Festival organisers are conscious of the need to apply practical solutions to protect the health and safety of our volunteers and festival patrons.
Unfortunately organisers have had to face the limitations in what can be practically achieved in running a community event.
These limitations have been exacerbated by the onset of coronavirus (COVID-19), which forced the cancellation of this year's festival, to be held last March.
Organising committee spokesperson, Kathleen Vangelovski made the announcement of the festival's closure, stating the event has been a real game changer in attitudes to women's wellness among the Shoalhaven community.
"The hard work and dedication from community organisations, as well as an army of volunteers have made the festival a real success," Ms Vangelovski said.
"Our volunteers have been the backbone of successive festivals.
"However, without the ongoing commitment of volunteers and the organising committee's ability to guarantee they will be COVID safe in an increasingly regulated environment, the festival is no longer tenable.
"At this stage there are no plans to hold the festival in the future.
"However, all organisation involved in the festival continue to contribute to our community in other ways."
She said the committee would like to take this opportunity to thank past festival volunteers and patrons for making this significant grassroots community event a success and we hope greater awareness of women's health and wellbeing will the festivals legacy.
The festival was initiated in 2011 by a number of local women and community organisations to raise awareness about the various health issues relating to women in our community.
The annual festival's organising committee has been comprised of representatives from nine Organisations - Flourish, Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District, NSW Health, Red Cross, Shoalhaven Neighbourhood Services, Shoalhaven Women's Health Centre, TAFE NSW, Waminda and Wellways.
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