As she watched increasingly distressing stories circulate about the drought gripping New South Wales and Queensland, BSSC Alumna Millie Hawkins was driven to action.

The Bendigo local is calling on the community to donate goods and funds ahead of a Strathdale garage sale which will be run towards the end of the month.

It is personal for Ms Hawkins, and not only because she was raised by a mother from a farming background.

The aspiring veterinarian has been undertaking voluntary farm experiences in Victoria and NSW as she prepares to apply to university.

“I got to know where food comes from and met some incredible people along the way,” Ms Hawkins said.

“Everything that has been happening with the drought recently has been all over my Facebook feed. Many of my friends have been posting a lot about it.

“It’s really hit home with me.”

Ms Hawkins said that 100 per cent of funds raised through the garage sale and the associated fundraiser would go to Aussie Helpers, a farming charity helping those on the land who are going through tough times.

Large tracts of eastern Australia are currently in the grip of a sustained drought and in recent weeks communities have mobilised to help those in crisis.

Ms Hawkins is looking for smaller household goods that can be sold at the Strathdale garage sale.

“We are kind of steering away from larger furniture at the moment, just because we are going to be space-limited,” Ms Hawkins said.

Goods will also need to be in good enough condition that they can be sold, lest organisers end up with too many items at the end of the day.

For those who want to donate money, a bank account had been set up. People could also donate to Aussie Farmers online.

Ms Hawkins said every little bit would make a huge difference.

The Aussie Helpers Garage Sale & Fundraiser will take place on Saturday, 25 August.

For more information on how to donate and for updates on the location of the garage sale, visit the event’s Facebook page.


Words: Tom O’Callaghan Picture: Glenn Daniels