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Mina Howard - giving us a Heads Up For Fire!

On a hot windy day in Blackheath (perfect fire weather we both agree), I meet Mina Howard for a cup of tea in the Govett Café. In 2009 Mina established something called HUFF and I am there to find out how it works. HUFF, or Heads Up For Fire (and other emergencies), was born in the aftermath of the 2009 Victorian bushfires which killed 173 people. Like all great ideas, it’s very simple: “Knock on your neighbour’s door and ask if they’re OK!”

Peter Baldwin and the DebateGraph

“He who knows only his own side of a case, knows little of that”.

John Stuart Mill

he first time I meet Peter Baldwin we are at the Blackheath 
Philosophy Forum. It’s Saturday afternoon, on the lingering tail of a golden Blackheath autumn, and the community hall is packed.


All in the Family with Mary Moody

Walk down any pretty tree-lined street in Blackheath and I guarantee more than a third of the cottages will be occupied by a person living alone. Mostly they’re older people who are on their own either by choice or through life circumstances.


Simon digs for Blackheath

Simon Says: “Get Connected”

To devote yourself to the community is an extraordinary thing. How does it happen? For Simon Hare it started with his family motto: “be curious, try everything and learn everything you can”.



Mark Liebman - designing for a water-sensitive world

Twenty seven years ago, a young auditor at Ernst & Young in Sydney, one of the “Big 4” accounting firms, came across a newly published report, “Blueprint for a Green Economy.” Prepared for the UK Environment Department, the report claimed that environmental problems had their roots in “economic failures.” This struck such a chord with him that he did a complete about-turn, left his job, travelled

social support

Enjoying the richness of lives well lived

t 87 and virtually blind, Yvonne McCready does not 
regard herself as socially isolated or in need of “someone to chat to.” Why would she? Monday to Friday she walks more than 1.3 km from her Blackheath cottage into “town” where she either stops for the community lunch or catches a train to Katoomba for a hot meal.


Toolo .. If I had a hammer

Remember when NASA launched the Hubble and the astronauts had everything they needed EXCEPT a crowbar? That’s the philosophy driving Justin Morrissey and the Katoomba Toolo: if you are out there doing a creative project, you should be able to get your hands on any tool you need.