Businesses encouraged to make the most of the CWA conference coming to Coffs in 2024

Members of the CWA North Coast Group: Leonie Fish, South Grafton Evening Branch Treasurer and State Social Issues Officer; Jodie Williams, Coffs Harbour Branch President, Branch and Group Publicity and State Publicity Officer Forum member; Leonie Saunders, Yamba Branch, Branch and Group Treasurer; Trish Stabback, Woolgoolga Branch, Group State Executive Committee Member; Ann Rehwinkel, Coffs Harbour Branch and Group President and Sharron Davidson, Grafton Branch, Group and Branch Secretary.

THE 2024 Country Women’s Association (CWA) of NSW State Conference is to be held at C.ex in Coffs Harbour from 6-9 May 2024.

Planning has begun by members of the CWA Zone 1 hosts, North Coast Group, to make the most of the expected influx of women and their partners, which could number 700-plus.

As a tourist destination, Coffs Harbour is expected to attract higher than usual delegate numbers, making C.ex an ideal venue for the huge CWA conference cohort.

“We can host the conference and house all displays under one roof at C.ex, which means the ladies don’t have to walk off-site to take everything in,” Jodie Williams, President of the Coffs Harbour Branch, Country Women’s Association of NSW, told News Of The Area.

“It’s a huge opportunity for the local economy with potentially 500 delegates, many of whom bring their hubbies, who need accommodation, places to eat, and are interested in seeing the local sights.

“These ladies do it in style; they spend up big, they eat out for most meals and they need accommodation.”

The CWA committee will be meeting with the Coffs Harbour Chamber of Commerce and local restaurants and shops to get them onboard with sharing opportunities for the visitors.

“We want to know local restaurants’ capacities as traditionally Sunday night we have numerous bookings to accommodate our ‘twinning dinners’ where up to 30 to 40 ladies attend these, per group.

“We know Coffs can avoid this, we just need to plan,” said Jodie.

“We’ll be arranging tours and hopefully compiling a booklet of activities with contact details so members can choose things they want to do and book in.

“They might want to do, for example, a trike tour, or one of the Bite Food Tours with Awia Markey, maybe visit the Botanic Gardens.

“We have so many options.

“We’ve been asked, by husbands, for a deep sea fishing experience and barefoot bowls; there’s so many things here in Coffs that we can offer them.”

On the Tuesday of the conference there is a big day open to delegate partners and observers which will take the visitors on an all-day tour, by bus, of the area.

“Our ideas for tours are a work in progress, maybe our readers may have some great ideas to share with us?”

The CWA committee expects a close working relationship with the City of Coffs Harbour and anticipates a conference welcome from Mayor Paul Amos.

“We will be inviting the three mayors of the regions and State and Federal Members to the opening ceremony,” said Jodie.

CWA North Coast Group committee members will be in contact with businesses across the Coffs Coast in the next few week to talk about potential opportunities.

“We really want to encourage local businesses across the CBD to get involved, from dress shops to cafes and pubs that can offer quick lunches to delegates on a conference break time limit.

“Those businesses that do come onboard, for the duration of the conference, we are encouraging them to put up our ‘CWA members welcome’ sign in their shop or café windows; this really helps to welcome people into these businesses and maybe offer a discount for members who show their CWA membership card.”

Any businesses that want to contact CWA to discuss opportunities should email Jodie at

“We are incredibly excited to bring the conference to Coffs Harbour and know that our business community and indeed wider community will welcome them with open arms,” she said.


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