Meet the Team

What started as one mum’s project to compile information about family-friendly Newcastle has grown into a successful website and more. Newy with Kids now provides information to thousands of families in the Newcastle and Hunter region. Whether it’s information on playgrounds, kid-friendly cafes, school holiday activities, kids concerts, parenting services or family events, Newy with Kids provides readers with information about things to do with their children thanks to the team below who assist with social media, events calendar and contributing articles.

Reena Bilen

Reena Bilen

Founder & Managing Editor

Originally from Canada, Reena started this website in late 2012 to share information about family-friendly Newcastle after juggling part-time work and a toddler. Not having grown up here, she had no idea about what was available for families and after searching unsuccessfully for a family guide decided to start her own. Since that time, both the toddler and the website have grown keeping Reena busy. A self-professed tech-head, Reena is a reluctant runner and hopeless at craft. She enjoys reading, travelling, laughing with friends and seeing her adopted hometown of Newcastle grow. If you see her out and about, say hi.

Cherry Connew

Cherry Connew

Digital Media

In 2011, unable to get childcare, Cherry decided to create her own job using her background in coding, technology and people skills. She now runs a boutique social media and digital marketing agency Little Monster Social as well as moonlighting with Newy with Kids. Mum of three kids, Cherry claims the owl as her spirit animal, hates running, hasn’t quite nailed a 70kg clean and jerk, and a very long time ago was a regional long jump champion.

Kate Baartz

Kate Baartz

Writer

Kate’s passion is storytelling – in both her personal and professional life. Nothing brings her more joy than a sharing a theatrical recollection of life events with family and friends. Kate is also a corporate communications specialist with more than 15 years experience. She is also mum to Robbie and Ryan’s partner in crime.

Read Kate’s articles

Felicity Cook

Felicity Cook

Writer

Felicity is a mum to one and  chiropractor based in Charlestown who is passionate about helping kids to grow and develop optimally through moving well, thinking well, eating well and having an optimally functioning nervous system.

Read Felicity’s articles

Sam Doove

Sam Doove

Writer

Sam Doove is a mum of 2 mini adventurers, a nature devotee and a lover of the simple things in life. She is the creator of The Rich Life, where she helps her readers to adopt a mindful approach to their money, so that they can live their version of a rich, purposeful life. She is also involved in the Warners Bay Sustainable Neighbourhood Group, who run quarterly Nature Play events for children around Lake Macquarie.

Read Sam’s articles

Anthony Wood

Anthony Wood

Writer

Anthony lives near Lake Macquarie and is stay-at-home dad to four boisterous children. He has published two children’s picture books (Flaming Charli and Dancing Charli) and is currently working on his second novel. He has a teaching background and an MA in Writing.

Read Anthony’s articles.