Melissa Henderson with her daughter Isla Henderson cooling off in the creek at Kellys Beach Bargara.
Melissa Henderson with her daughter Isla Henderson cooling off in the creek at Kellys Beach Bargara. Mike Knott

BIG READ: Bundy locals reveal 3 of their biggest priorities

WHEN the NewsMail asked readers on Facebook what businesses they'd like to see in the region, there were plenty of suggestions.

From calls for a heavily-craved Krispy Kreme franchise to fashion outlets such as H&M, requests poured in, with more than 300 comments and counting.

But there were other suggestions, too.

Parents and concerned locals asked for more activities for young people and children to keep them occupied.

Overwhelmingly, readers moved out of the business space and called for more human and social services to improve the region from the perspective of its most precious resource - its people.

These are the three areas where locals want to see change.

BEACH REPORT: Paul Sterling on his daily walk along Kellys Beach Bargara.
BEACH REPORT: Paul Sterling on his daily walk along Kellys Beach Bargara. Mike Knott

Health and social services to raise people up

Jody Griffiths is one local calling for additional health services.

She suggested "a big rehabilitation centre for people with injuries with 24-hour care and 24/7 physio".

Lisa Russell continued the calls for improved health services, asking for a holistic approach.

"A life lesson service showing people how to look after children, cook healthy meals, grow vegies and look after their budgets," she said.

"I know I may as well be asking for the moon, but we are missing the basics in life. We are moving way too fast and too many are dropping of the scale."

It was a sentiment shared by Noelene Polzin.

"Workshops for parents and kids who are travelling the wrong road" was at the top of her list.

"Something to turn lives around before they end up in the court system."

Laurie Raines wanted to combine business and opportunity for those who are struggling.

"I would think a business that made products that could hire people to overcome unemployment," she said.

For Rebecca Raftery, a nursing home and 24-hour care facility for people younger than 65 was high on the list.

Lex Roberts called for a specialised aged care training facility that teaches in-home care requirements for the needs of the elderly.

Karra Adams said she'd like to see more free fitness gear in parks to make fitness easier for families.

"Need more free fitness equipment," she said.

"Who enjoys going to the gym and paying?

"Would be nice to have kids be around and watch you exercise."

Bundaberg once had a skating rink.
Bundaberg once had a skating rink. Max Fleet BUN101112RLR13

Activities for young people to keep them entertained

Things for young people to do ranked highly with locals.

Toni Nonna Brent called for a  water playground park for kids.

"Hervey Bay has one, Gladstone has one… instead of more food outlets, let's bring more activities," she said.

Laura Johnson also commented on the situation for youths.

"Something for the teens in this town, like a massive skate park," is what she asked for.

Simone Swallow said an arcade would be a fun activity for kids.

"A large gaming arcade with machines and pool tables for the young and young at heart," was Niki Joy's suggestion.
For Liezl Walker, that suggestion was an indoor rock climbing centre.

Judith Fuller said she wanted to bring back the region's iconic but now defunct skating rink and have a Timezone in with it.

Ben Fensom suggested "a pool and arcade hall for the younger generation".

Kris Nelson called for "a place for kids aged 12-18 to go and have fun (play games like an arcade) and have fun with kids their own age".

"There are too many places for kids aged 5-12 but nothing for the teens," she said.

Rosemenia Saliganan Pagulayan called for the return of the old go-kart track and water slide.

Saskia at East Bundaberg has been given as an example of a classy shop locals say they want more of.
Saskia at East Bundaberg has been given as an example of a classy shop locals say they want more of. Tahlia Stehbens

Businesses with a focus on health and class

There's an air of wanting quality when it comes to what Bundaberg people are asking for in shops.

There's also an air of excitement when it comes to making Bundy the best it can be, hand-in-hand with a perceived disappointment in lack of momentum and movement.

The classic calls for fast food chains have been met with calls for healthy food outlets as well as more boutique stores.

Brittany Price said she believed the region had enough to offer with food, and wanted to see clothing stores and a rooftop bar.

"Bundaberg has great potential it's a shame we aren't jumping at the chance to make it exciting," she said.

Olga Beath said the emphasis was on locals to support Bundaberg businesses, rather than just buying items online.

One experience that can't be bought online is enjoying an open-air movie, and that's exactly what Kelly Ennor suggested.

She wants to see an outdoor theatre where people can take chairs, rugs a picnic and wine.

"They have them in WA and they are fantastic," she said.

"Some have wood fire pizza on-site and coffee vans.

"They can even show some foreign films which are quite good."

For Yvonne Zielke, it's about being healthy.

"I would like to see a takeaway that provides healthy and nutritious family dinners at a reasonable price," she said.

Ms Zielke called for a system where people called up, ordered their meal then came through to collect it.

Isabelle Desvaux suggested an idea that could complement online shopping by giving something back locally - an after-hours parcel pick-up spot.

"For all the online shoppers who can't get their parcels delivered to their home due to safety reasons," she said.
Tina Harada was another who wanted more health dining options.

"A wholefoods plant-based restaurant and takeaway, with a choice of salad bar, a great wholesome healthy foods option instead of fast or junk food places," she suggested.

For Marianne Lethbridge, all she wants is stores that are classy, clean and a pleasure to shop in.
"More tasteful shops like Saskia," she said.

"Shops that have something classy and clean, tastefully decorated, quality stuff such as good linen."



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