*** PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE ***
2020 AUTUMN CONFEST CANCELLED DUE TO COVID-19 PUBLIC HEALTH AND SAFETY CONCERNS
At its meeting held Thursday 12 March 2020, the ConFest Committee, a committee of the Down To Earth (Victoria) Cooperative Society Limited, decided to cancel the 2020 Autumn ConFest on advice from its internal medical team.
This advice was as follows:
“We have formed the opinion that simply holding the gathering carries public health risks that are unable to be mitigated, and a set of implications and risks for the broader community that we cannot reconcile.”
2020 Autumn ConFest was to be held on the cooperative’s property in Moulamein NSW from 9-14 April 2020.
ConFest is a family-friendly outdoor camping event of more than 6,000 people. The gathering is run entirely by volunteers.
While the financial situation for the event was projected to significantly deteriorate the longer this decision was delayed, the primary considerations of cooperative members regrettably making this decision were ethical and social responsibility, not financial.
For more than 40 years, the purpose of ConFest has been to facilitate human connection and learning through a conference of shared skills and ideas, against a background celebrating art, music and food and connection to the land and the communities we temporarily inhabit. We recognise at this time that social distancing is temporarily required to enable us to reconvene as a healthy community at a later date.
We acknowledge and thank our hundreds of volunteers who have been working many hours on projects in the lead up to the gathering. We also thank our market vendors, suppliers and statutory authority partners that also make this gathering possible, as well as the local communities of Moulamein, Barham and Deniliquin whose economic health has already been stressed by protracted drought conditions.
ConFest will return as soon as possible.
For more information, please contact:
Cooperative Secretary – Down To Earth (Victoria) Co-operative Society Limited