Background and History: HEN started in late 2009 through discussion between initiator, Glenn Vickery, and Marty Gauci (Hawkesbury Council Bushcare Co-ordinator) as an idea for a community environment centre based on the model developed at Noosa. With the support from Council and Hawkesbury Nepean Catchment Management, as well as contact with a wide range of groups, a steering committee was formed to set up an environmental umbrella group in July 2010. By November 2010, this group had a working committee with Glenn as interim chairperson; a name (Hawkesbury Environment Network); was on its way to incorporation; had aims and objectives and a draft constitution. The first formal committee had Graham Rand as Chair and Glenn Vickery as Secretary. Past Committee Members included Professor Shelley Burgin who initiated the Hawkesbury Riverkeeper project; and Erin Rowe (who was 2009 National Young Landcarer); one of the highlights in 2012-13 was the development of the Alive! Sustainable Education Program led by Zhan Patterson, which drew together hundreds of youth in a 2-day forum at UWS Hawkesbury, and led to the formation of the Hawkesbury Environmental Educators’ Network [HEEN].
Now in 2015, HEN has a large and diverse membership of individuals and groups across the Hawkesbury and beyond; is a member of the Nature Conservation Council NSW; and affiliated with several other peak environmental organisations, institutes and agencies. Since 2010 our constitution has been ratified, and an application for registration as an environmental organisation with Deductible Gift Recipient status is imminent. Support by an experienced and talented team of committee members and executive who have not lost step despite losing people on the way, has seen increase in strength and activity in pushing for sound planning, environmental protection, and environmental education for sustainability.
Vision of HEN for the area: A sustainable future for all in the Hawkesbury region.
Vision of HEN as an organisation: A strong, viable, dynamic and credible voice for the environment of the Hawkesbury; a network which is representative of the Hawkesbury communities, which represents its members, and educates and engages the community.
Mission Statement: To conserve and restore the natural environment of the Hawkesbury region. To bring together people and organisations to increase awareness of and act for sustainability and the environment.
HEN members and volunteers are active in range of areas, including:
- Lobbying/ submissions to governments
- Environmental education for sustainability
- Committee representation
- Bush regeneration
- Organic growing
- Fauna and flora studies and research
- Water testing