Clover's eNews - No 589

Joining parents and children in playground at Kings Cross.Today is Ride to School Day and more than 200,000 students across Australia took the opportunity to ride to school.

I visited Erskineville Public School to take part in their celebrations and was really pleased to see so many children (and their parents) on bikes. Most children love riding bikes and for many in the inner city, riding is a convenient and safe way to travel to school.

Earlier this week the Heart Foundation called for safe routes and separated cycleways to encourage more children to ride and improve their health after a study showed Australian children as amongst the most "cosseted" and "chauffeured" in the world.

Things are slowly changing in Sydney - the principal of Bourke Street Public School said nearly a quarter of his 140 students were now riding to school after the City built the Bourke St cycleway.

This week I helped launch Lift Redfern - a campaign to make Redfern Station accessible to everyone and was deeply proud to present another round of funding from my Lord Mayor's Salary Trust.

I spoke at the Australia & New Zealand Sustainability Circle luncheon and outlined how the City is working to turn Sydney into a great world city while achieving environmental sustainability, maintaining economic vitality and ensuring continued social cohesion.

I also spoke at the launch of the City's Living In Harmony Festival in Town Hall where 2000 of our citizens gathered for a terrific line up of events. If Australia is one of the world's great multicultural success stories, its heart lies here in Sydney, where 43 per cent of our city's population were overseas born, and close to a third speak a second language at home.

I met with members from the Australia Business Arts Foundation to discuss the role of Art and Culture in community cohesion and to thank them for their partnership for events like Sydney Festival.

I've also enjoyed meeting hundreds of people at the City's 'In Your Village' consultations, held this week in the City's south, Surry Hills, Ultimo and Kings Cross and Potts Point areas. Great to meet parents and children from Kings Cross's Junior Jivers group when I arrived at the Rex Centre (pictured).

We are hosting workshops for each village group - asking how you see your neighbourhood in 2030 and how we can work with you to protect and improve our villages over coming decades.

The City will use the feedback, along with other local input, to draft a plan for each village group, for Council's consideration and funding in future budgets.

It's been really worthwhile to discuss the City's work and to hear your ideas.

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