Barbara Baldwin

In a nutshell: My parents were Austrian, I was born in Scotland, went to school in England, my first job was in Denmark, and I studied in Germany. I live in Australia and over the past 19 years have worked predominantly in Asia. I have three sons whom I love and five grandchildren whom I adore and now enjoy a fulfilling life in South Australia, near the beach.

My professional life began with the Camphill training in curative education in the UK and Germany. I then studied speech as a stage art at the music conservatorium of Stuttgart and pursued my therapeutic studies at Tubingen University. My first professional position was as a speech pathologist in the University clinic of Professor Hellbrugge in Munich, where I gained invaluable experience in clinical practice, research and professional teamwork. Later I trained in Chirophonetic Therapy with Drs Alfred and Gunde Baur, in Austria. I acted as his translator for his international courses, translated his book ‘Healing Sounds’ and taught Chirophonetic therapy in several countries,

I arrived in Australia in 1981 with my (then) husband and three small children and for 3 years we took on the leadership and development of Wandin, an anthroposophic residential, work and training centre for adolescents and adults in Victoria. Moving to NSW, I set up a private practice and became more involved with Waldorf education, responding to the needs of teachers in their dealings with children with additional learning needs, offering direct therapy for children, consultations with teachers and supporting the development of learning support and parent education in various schools.

1994 in South Australia I continued my work in private
practice, as a speech therapist and special educator. In that capacity I visited many Waldorf Schools, as well as private and public schools, vocational training centres and supported work centres, contributing to the teaching methodologies, therapeutic approaches and social integration within many organisations.

In 2002 I spearheaded the first Steiner stream within mainstream education at the Trinity Garden Primary School (now a fully-fledged and successful Steiner Stream) and have since supported all of the streamed Steiner initiatives in South Australia.

Recognising the need for more Waldorf/Steiner trained teachers, I set up Sheoak College, together with my colleagues David McColl and later Mark Molloy, offering part-time teacher training in Adelaide. Many of the teachers now active in South Australian schools gained their first Waldorf insights at Sheoak College.

AAMA-newsletter 5 July 2022

In 2003 I became involved with Waldorf teacher training and curative education in Japan, subsequently working with schools and parents and conducting courses in many Asian countries. Over an 8-year period I developed curative training courses in five Chinese cities, with the intention of laying the foundations of an anthroposophical curative movement in China. I am still active in China and Vietnam working with teachers and parents via Zoom.

Since 2005 I developed and ran special family retreats, the Mignon Programs, for families with children with special needs, in Japan and China. This provided clinical practice for my students and offered families respite and new perspectives in parenting exceptional children. One such course was also held for Australian families in Victoria.

I am currently semi-retired, offering courses and consultations to developing and established schools relating to inclusion and learning support. Re-engaging with the Curative Educational stream I am now also working with Inala Rudolf Steiner Centre on issues of social inclusion, quality of life and, my special interest, aging with dignity.

I see the AAMA as a regional organ for practitioners: enabling, educating and supporting the individuals, strengthening the modalities and contributing to the public image of anthroposophical medicine and therapy in Australia.