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South Maroota Spring Fair

By Dr Kim Loo

North West Community Services Inc. (NWCS) is a non-profit community organisation based in the Sam Lane Community Complex, Park Street, Riverstone.

Formally know as Riverstone Neighbourhood Centre, NWCS was renamed in March this year (2023) and is behind the Riverstone Family Medical Practice where I work. It supports a range of services including a Men’s Shed and community garden.

On Saturday (September 16th) NWCS held a Community Spring Fair at South Maroota.

Present were all the services that help foster community, engage and support those who are vulnerable , help with preparedness for disasters and improve and nourish the community with more green spaces.

I spoke to Alex Blair from Maroota RFS who told me the summer is going to be hot and dry. And not that long ago there were serious fires.

He and his team are working with residents to make sure the community is well prepared. This community has not had a major fire in this area for 20 years. To find out more about being prepared visit the Rural Fire Service website and

I spoke to Angela Van Dyke the CEO of North West Community Services about this wonderful organisation which works in multiple ways to foster community well-being and disaster preparedness. This service has helped several of my patients.

Community Spring Fair 2023 at South Maroota

South Maroota Spring Fair
Angela van dyke the ceo of north west community services with dr kim loo from riverstone

CEO of Landcare Tulough Guerin was also there. The Landcare movement is an invaluable organisation which encourages a community-based approach to protecting and managing our resources. Our natural world is so important for our physical and mental health.

Our interests overlap as I do nature prescriptions and this does intersect with the work of Landcare. I prescribe time with nature for my patients such as a walk in a wooded area or gardening. It helps with psychological distress and improves general health. There are good studies in Australia with supporting evidence of this.

The SES and service NSW Service NSW were also present. As we have increasing heat waves and extreme weather. We need to have community preparedness and good disaster planning.

This fair was important because it gave an opportunity for our community to connect and find out what is available and accessible so that we can all plan ahead for any disaster.

North West Community Services has a full program of activities every week. To find out about regular programs and special events like the Spring Fair visit

The Hills to Hawkesbury welcomes articles for consideration. If you have been to an event in the Hills to Hawkesbury area that you want to write about submit it and a photograph to [email protected]

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