Beloved local Facebook page Darlo Darlings recently celebrated its 3rd birthday. Urban Village spoke with creator Mike Galvin about the pages significance and how it connects our community.

It was on the 11th of April 2018 that local resident Mike Galvin started the Darlo Darlings Facebook page as a way for locals to connect with each other, as well as engage further with local businesses.

Mike Galvin says that the creation of the page was partially prompted by the death of Surry Hills resident Natalie Wood.

“Natalie Wood had passed away and no one knew that she was in her home, passed away, for over 8 years… Natalie didn’t know her neighbours, her family didn’t live nearby and no one knew she was gone for all that time,” he said.

“It’s a very sad story but it was also an inspiration to start the group.”.

Since its creation in 2018, the Facebook page has grown exponentially to be one of the busiest and most active of its kind. Mike says: “The group stared with a few of my neighbours, it grew very quickly. We had our first event at the end of May 2018, and that was a small gathering at a local restaurant with about 25 people.”

“Now the group has over 6,000 members and the group events usually have anything from up to 80—120 people…”

Darlo Darlings is seen as a reflection of the unique and relaxed culture of postcode 2010 and has an emphasis on neighbourliness and helping one another.

To celebrate, Darlo Darlings of course used the occasion to support a local business. Bourke Street restaurant Beast&Co have joined in celebrations, offering a 20% off the bills total for the next two weeks (until Sunday the 25th of April).

As Darlo Darlings grows, they hope to continue their local events, as well as launching Darlo Darlings Street Pride “which is all about sustainable ways of living in the community… It’s really looking at the tidy towns model and encouraging civic pride” says Mike.

Darlo Darlings will continue to collaborate with local institutions, such as the National Art Gallery and the Darlinghurst Theatre Company.

Mike Galvin says that he also hopes that Darlo Darlings will continue and strengthen their charity roots, such as their relationship with local charities Rough Edges and The Girls and Boys Brigade.

So Darlo Darlings is not just marking a birthday, it can reflect on three years of making a real difference in its neighbourhood through connecting people and businesses.