The annual Trailwalker Brisbane has been cancelled by Oxfam Australia because of the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and public health policies and restrictions.
Oxfam Australia Fundraising Director Andrew Buchanan said the decision was in line with Federal and State government strategies to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Australia, including a ban on non-essential events and activities and the closure of Queensland’s borders.
Mr Buchanan said this had meant walkers had not been able to train effectively and Oxfam staff, who were needed for essential preparation and planning for the event, had been unable to travel to Brisbane.
The Brisbane Trailwalker was scheduled to be held from 19-21 June.
“The cancellation of the Brisbane event is, of course, hugely disappointing, but the health, safety and well-being of participants, volunteers and staff is our number one concern,” Mr Buchanan said.
“We are grateful for all the hard work and support of participants, volunteers and staff involved in the event, which raises money to help improve the lives of people living in poverty.”
Mr Buchanan said participants were being notified of the decision and Oxfam was working with relevant authorities to make the necessary arrangements for the cancellation.
“This was due to be the 10-year anniversary of Oxfam Trailwalker Brisbane,” Mr Buchanan said. “Since we launched our Brisbane event in 2011, we have seen close to 10,000 people from all walks of life tackle the challenge of completing a 100km trek in 48 hours. Together they have raised more than $8 million to support some of the worlds’ most vulnerable people.
“We are sincerely grateful to the Oxfam Trailwalker community and generous supporters for their dedication and continued support, which helps support Oxfam’s work tackling poverty around the world.
“This support is needed now more than ever, with vulnerable communities and people likely to be the worst hit as the coronavirus crisis unfolds.
“Oxfam is already responding to COVID-19 in some of the world’s poorest countries, like Yemen, Bangladesh, Timor Leste and many others.
“We’re distributing essential supplies including personal protective equipment and hygiene kits. We are providing emergency materials and food to households, upgrading water and sanitation systems at refugee camps and health facilities, and continuing training and awareness-raising activities.”
Updates on Trailwalker and more detailed information can be found on the Trailwalker website.
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