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Community & Business

28 May, 2022

CWA State Conference

By Hilda Newstead Gilgandra Evening Branch CWA publicity officer

CWA of NSW, 100th annual general meeting was held between the 2-5 May, 2022, at the Royal Randwick The official opening was held on Monday, May 2, 2022 at 9.30am.

Official party arrived on stage, led by Pipers Ian Innes and Heather Martin. A Welcome to Country was led by Aunty Lola Ryan. She welcomed us to their land and wished us all a successful conference.

The national anthem was led by Anthony Coyle, fol- lowed by the CWA anthem and Motto. There was a wel- come by state president Ms Stephanie Stanhope, a wel- come from Cr Dylan Parker, mayor of Randwick City Council who thanked us for choosing Randwick for our 100th birthday. There were special messages of good- wishes, a letter from the prime minister, a video from the NSW premier, and from the CEO of the royal flying doctor service .

Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AO QC Governor of NSW officially opened the meet- ing. She spoke highly of the CWA and congratulations on our 100 Birthday, as we continue to improve condi- tions for country women and children. ‘’We are an organisation of doers,” she said.

There was also a wonderful performance from the Moorambilla Voices.

Keynote Speaker

Ms Layne Beachley AO. A former professional surfer from Manly NSW, Ms Beachley won the world surfing championship seven times. She is an inspiration to all leaders as she shared her 40 years of experience, the most successful female surfer in history. Ms Beachley showed up every day and worked four jobs to achieve a successful career. After lunch, there were bussiness sessions. At the first Special General Meeting, there was a Medical Research fund cheque presentation.

A cheque of $21,700 was given to the University of Newcastle to Brian Schloeffel for ovarian cancer research. This was followed by the state office bearer nominee introduction.

Tuesday, May 3

Business sessions held at the Royal Randwick.

This included the State Honorary Secretary Report, State Honorary Treasures Report, and agenda.

After lunch there was another business session.

There were 38 motions to discuss during the four day conference, of which 34 were carried. Health, Education, Agriculture/Environment, Transport and Telecommunications. Motions passed at conference become CWA of NSW policy.
Health policy

CWA of NSW has endorsed the findings into the health outcomes and access to health and hospital ser- vices in rural, regional and remote. The CWA eagerly awaits the state government’s response to the recom- mendations made, that motion was passed unanimously. Keynote Speaker

Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons AO AFSM from resilience NSW. He spoke about the huge challenges the state has confronted in the past three years, and the role he has played in the recovery after the bush fires. Mr Fitzsimmons spoke about lives lost during the bush fire weeks, how he is passionate about all his staff, 26 lives lost during the recovery effort. He was a mentor, coun- cillor, a friend to chat to, and he said to his mates - its okay to have feelings and emotions. There were good days and bad days, and Mr Fitzsimmons tried to make a difference to all members and their families. A fabulous presentation.

International Report

Sue Armstrong, did an acknowledgment of Country, and one minute silence was observed. Spoke about the difficulties during COVID-19, but managed to talk to people all over the world. The material aid was very successful, as well stamps were well supported. The stu-

dents powerpoint presentation on the country Malaysia. First place - grade four to five, St Joseph’s Catholic school Portland. Second place - Wagga Wagga Public School. Country of study for 2022-2023 is Latvia, a very interesting country.

ACWW report

Mrs Gail Cummins, South Pacific Area President presented her report. She spoke of the many hours taken up to Zoom meetings, due to COVID-19, and was please to announce that $80,000 has been sent to the Tonga disaster appeal to refurbish the preschool .

Mrs Cummins always carries her doll Mini with her, and a collection towards her upkeep during the after- noon raised $1400.
Wednesday, May 4

Speaker Liz Hartfull shared her experiences around writing the centenary book “The Women Who Changed Country Australia”.

The Show Catering Committee worked extremely hard, and due to COVID-19 closed the kiosk for two days. Over three tonnes of flour was used for the scones ,and The little Big dairy from Dubbo donated the fresh cream. Over 300 volunteers worked at the kiosk, lots of goodies were sold. The show committee presented a cheque of $125,000 which was raised last year 2021, of that $8000was donated to the disaster relief fund. A fan- tastic effort form all members.

Thursday, May 5
Land cookery

There were over 2800 entries cakes, slices, etc. Ruth Cargill Macquarie Group, received third place for deco- rated iced cake.


Agricultural/Environment Committee work on a number of submissions throughout the year in regards to Ag/Env, they also run a recycled article competition, to encourage members to reduce the items they no longer need.


The very first publicity stand was very well received, and the comments from the visitors were very encour- aging. A member from state executive will be on the strategic planning committee and has offered to assist us to prepare for consideration for the establishment of a state publicity committee for next years conference to be held in Bathurst 2023.
Handicraft Report

The display of handy craft was just amazing, Macquarie Group came in fourth place with a total score of 651. The newly elected CWA state Ppesident for 2022/2023 is Joy Beames from Dunedoo Branch, a Castlereagh CWA member for 30 years. We wish her well. A very well organised conference, fantastic loca- tion.


CWA of NSW Disaster Relief Fund

The CWA of NSW Disaster Relief Fund was set up to assist with recovery efforts in instances of disasters like this. The fund has recently been used to support a range of relief activities during the drought and bush- fires. The Disaster Relief Fund Committee have recent- ly met to discuss flood relief initiatives and have approved an amount of $500 000 being made available from the fund to support flood recovery efforts across the state. Initial payments and allocations from the fund will be made as follows:

• $200 000 provided to GIVIT to support the provi- sion of essential household support items including vouchers and other household needs;

• $100 000 provided to Foodbank NSW/ACT for the provision, freight and distribution of food hampers;

• $50 000 provided to the Northern Rivers Women and Children’s Services Inc. for outreach workers to provide essential necessities in a range of circum- stances, but particularly targeting women dealing with family and domestic violence matters. 

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