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Welcome to Livewell Clusters, to the Livewell Yarra website and to this blog. My name is Rob Salter, and I’m employed to work on this project by Perth’s Curtin University, though I live in Melbourne. (I brought the project back home with me.) I’m just one member of the Livewell team, but more about that later.

Livewell Yarra (the first Livewell Cluster) will be launched on 5 March and you’re invited – invited not just to the Launch, but also to be part of Livewell. But why should you? Well, there’s a range of possible reasons. You may be deeply troubled by climate change. You may be attracted to the idea that you can become happier and healthier while reducing your carbon footprint. You may want to be involved in an innovative project with other Yarra folks. You may want to draw on your skills and experience and make a distinctive contribution to the project.

Of course you can reduce your carbon emissions off your own bat, and most of us do to some extent. But life’s complicated, and there’s often a big gap between what we intend to do and what we actually do. Other things get in the way – earning a living, raising kids, getting the car or the roof or our teeth fixed… We may not know where to start, or how to start. The people we mix with may not be doing much in this line. And after all, nothing’s going to happen to us if we don’t do anything to reduce our emissions, so… it just stays on the ‘to do’ list!

What can make a difference here? It helps to do things with others. It helps to have access to the advice and information we need. It helps to be part of a process designed to get us into action. This is what Livewell offers.

So we invite you to come to the Launch and see what you think. We’re confident there’ll be something in it for you.

This blog won’t always be written by me. Guest writers will contribute as well. There’s a whole world of people with valuable and interesting things to say.

And there’s a whole bunch of people and organisations contributing in some way to Livewell – volunteers, a PhD student for the project, Yarra Council, Yarra Energy Foundation, Curtin University, the Cooperative Research Centre for Low Carbon Living and more! I’ll tell you more about them in the next blog post. Our community is full of assets we draw on.

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Livewell started as an action research project funded by the Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) for Low Carbon Living, delivered through Curtin University and supported by the City of Yarra and Yarra Energy Foundation. Further funding was then provided by the CRC to produce the online Guide to running a ‘Livewell Group’

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