WOW Australia


WOW (Women of the World) Festival to return to Queensland

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The Premier is supporting the return of the hugely successful WOW (Women of the World) Festival to Queensland for three years from 2020.

WOW started in the UK in 2010 by Jude Kelly to mark the centenary of International Women’s Day and has grown into one of the biggest movements of women and girls in the world, being held in thirty countries on five continents.  

Coinciding with Queensland Women’s Week and International Women’s Day celebrations, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said supporting the WOW Festival’s return to Queensland helps position the State as a leader of gender equality in the Southern Hemisphere.

“More than 5,000 people attended WOW at the Brisbane Powerhouse and QPAC over three days when it was held as part of Festival 2018 for the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“I want Queensland to be the home of this fun and energetic celebration of women and girls, which has been held in major cities across the globe including London, Istanbul, Beijing and Baltimore.

“This will be a national and international celebration reaching out to all communities across Australia and to women and girls in the Asia Pacific Region.

“My government is committed to increasing the representation of women in the workplace, in business, the arts, in sport and in the community and this festival will help people come together in the spirit of fun to imagine a better world of equality and provide solutions for change.

“As a major event, it will also help attract many more visitors to our state.”

Global Ambassador for the WOW Foundation in Australia and Executive Producer of WOW at Festival 2018 Cathy Hunt said last year’s event had been life changing for many women and girls.

“The impact has gone way beyond what we imagined,” Ms Hunt said.

“The chance to grow this legacy with events across three years will position Queensland on the international stage as a place where social innovation leads to strong communities and inclusive economic growth.”

Minister for Child Safety, Youth and Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence Di Farmer said the WOW Festival aligns with the Palaszczuk Government’s Queensland Women’s Strategy 2016-21.

“The WOW Festival has the ability to educate our youngest minds, and new visitors to our State about important issues like gender equality,” Ms Farmer said.

“This is a fantastic announcement as we celebrate 90 years of International Women’s Day in Queensland.”

Minister Farmer said the Palaszczuk Government recently released its progress report for the Queensland Women’s Strategy 2016-2021 which showed steady improvements in all areas.

“One standout example is the number of women on government boards, which has increased significantly in the last three years, from 31 to 47 per cent,” Ms Farmer said.

“So, we are on the cusp of achieving our target of 50 per cent by 2020.

“Every Queensland workplace, school, sports club and community organisation has the ability and responsibility to encourage women and girls to participate, progress and pursue leadership roles.

“Closing the gender pay gap, addressing the superannuation shortfall and ensuring women are afforded every opportunity to flourish are not objectives the Government can achieve on its own.”

The Queensland Women’s Strategy and 2016-2018 Report Card can be found at

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