The importance of stable health and wellbeing has taken on a new meaning during the current pandemic as people are forced into isolation or are forced to follow strict physical and social distance protocols.
But while many people may be aware of the negative impact on physical and mental health caused by COVID restrictions, knowing what to do and how to break the cycle is often a challenge, particularly for busy adults juggling parenthood, work and recreation.
With this in mind two Port Stephens professionals - nutritionist Chontelle Grecian and wellbeing practioner Kerri Rodley - have joined forces to put on the Port's first ever wellbeing expo in six months' time when "hopefully restrictions have been relaxed even further".
The inaugural Port Stephens Wellbeing Expo is scheduled to be held on March 28, 2021, but stallholders interested in participating have until September 30 to register their interest.
"The number of business involved will depend on the venue for the expo," Ms Grecian said.
The event organisers say they will be drawing on their combined 30 years' experience in the health and wellbeing industry to provide locals with access to the incredible range of practitioners on offer, and to position the area as the place for an escape outside of Sydney.
"Port Stephens has a truly unique and professional range of practitioners, everything for every body, and we are proud to showcase them in the expo," Ms Grecian said.
"The expo will provide a professional framework for participating businesses to showcase what our region has to offer. With a range of health philosophies, from blue zones to a more clinical approach, the aim of the festival is to create a central hub for wellness practitioners in this region."
From massage to nutrition, naturopathy to aromatherapy, reflexology to reiki, yoga to physiotherapy, retreats to spas, and many more in between, the Port has more than 100 health and wellbeing businesses who may be eager to showcase their expertise and experience.
"People travel to Byron Bay and further afield for a retreat but they aren't aware of what is on their own doorstep. Now, especially after what 2020 has thrown at business owners in the health and wellbeing sector, we want to boost this industry and create a strong network for years to come," Ms Grecian said.
Ms Rodley believes that the benefits of the expo to be three-fold.
"It is the perfect opportunity for practitioners to network and create an united industry, it will showcase wellbeing products and services to the Port Stephens community, and it will promote Port Stephens as the wellbeing destination for visitors from Sydney and regional NSW."
Stallholders have until September 30 to apply to be part of the 2021 expo. For details visit pswellbeingexpo.com.au/stallholders-info.
All profits from the expo will go to the Nelson Bay-based Yaccaba Centre.