Scenic Rim citizen campaign promises to take drinking water to drought-affected schools

HELP: Holli Annie and Jo Sellens have joined forces to send water to Stanthorpe. Photo: Larraine Sathicq
HELP: Holli Annie and Jo Sellens have joined forces to send water to Stanthorpe. Photo: Larraine Sathicq

SCENIC Rim business women Holli Annie and Jo Sellens are spearheading a campaign to provide drinking water to people out west struggling with the reality of drought.

The campaign comes after police reports last week of water thefts in the drought-stricken region where the water situation has reached crisis point.

Ms Annie, who owns and runs Holli Dolli boutique in Canungra, said she knew she had to do something to help when she read a Facebook post about the dire water situation around Warwick, Stanthorpe and Applethorpe.

"Their dam level is at six per cent and they reckon they will run out of drinking water by Christmas," she said.

"I put a post up about it on Facebook and Jo jumped on board straight away and the response from the community has been awesome."

Ms Sellens, who runs the Backroads shop in Beaudesert had been storing water in the shop until she ran out of room and the owner of the empty shop next door offered the space for storage.

HOPE FLOATS: Holli Annie and Jo Sellens outside the Backroads drop-off point in Beaudesert.

HOPE FLOATS: Holli Annie and Jo Sellens outside the Backroads drop-off point in Beaudesert.

The response at the drop-off points in Beaudesert and at Holli Dolli in Canungra has been enormous and Ms Annie said delivering it would require more than the car and float she had planned to use.

"My idea was that mums around town would just buy an extra slab of water in their shopping and drop it off," she said.

"But it got much bigger really quickly. Several businesses have offered to donate drivers and petrol to deliver the water and we have had support from three Gold Coast radio stations as well as BeauFM."

By Wednesday afternoon the number of bottles ready to go was already in the thousands.

Ms Annie said the water would be delivered to Stanthorpe Rotary club to be distributed around schools in the region.

Water stores dropped off at Holli Dolli in Canungra so far.

Water stores dropped off at Holli Dolli in Canungra so far.

"We will be delivering them on September 5 so the cutoff day for donations in September 4," she said.