A brief Herstory of the Wagga Women’s Health Centre
In the late 1970’s only a handful of Wagga Wagga’s General Practitioners were prepared to freely prescribe oral contraceptives.
Ald. Mary Kidson, the only woman on Wagga Wagga City Council, took up the campaign to fight for improved local family planning services.
Extensive lobbying culminated in a public meeting in July 1978, attended by 60 people. Further meetings were held and the encouraging turn-outs with generous pledges of money from the community, led to the opening of the Centre in rented premises at 131 Edward St.
Much work had to be done to transform what was a badly run-down house into a facility which was comfortable and operational for support services. Senator Susan Ryan officially opened the Centre in October 1979.
In February 1981 the Centre relocated to Morrow Street, continuing to operate without funding. Since 1985 the Centre has been funded from NSW Health through it’s Non Government Organisation Grant Program. The Centre, which moved to 92 Morgan Street in June 2011, has a local management committee of interested community members. Those at the Centre now are proud of all the lobbying, energy, commitment and hard work done in the early years.
In October 2014 the Centre achieved a significant milestone with the purchase of our own building at 22 Peter Street. This was the result of three years of tireless strategic fundraising activities and profound support from the Wagga Wagga and surrounding community.
The visionary efforts by the Centre’s founders and those who have followed have resulted in a much greater emphasis on those most basic tenets of a free and modern society… women’s health care and rights.