'Take what you need': Big W store's incredible gesture for bushfire victims

Piles of new clothing and footwear have been offered to people displaced by emergency evacuations as savage bushfires tear through Queensland.

A Big W at the Noosa Civic shopping centre, on the Sunshine Coast, has been praised for its kind offering to uprooted families.

The heartwarming gesture was shared in a post on a local Facebook community group, spreading the message to those still without access to their belongings.

“Donations for those affected by the fires,” a sign balanced on a box filled with clothing read.

“Please take what you need.”

A generous haul of clothing items offered for free at Big W Noosa Civic to Queensland bushfire victims. Source: Facebook

Store manager Dan Mielnik said the donations were part of the store’s regular handout to the Salvation Army, which occurred a couple of times annually.

He said the haul of several thousands of items of aged stock was due to be collected on Wednesday, but he decided to first offer it to victims of the bushfires.

While few were in need of emergency clothing at the evacuation centre in Noosa when Mr Mielnik visited on Tuesday morning, he said several people collected items in-store after seeing the Facebook post.

“It’s all aged stock that instead of marking it down, we donate it away,” he told Yahoo News Australia.

“There’s a mix of all items – kids, mens and some ladies clothing.”

The woman who shared the photo to the group expressed her support of the generous act.

Noosa Civic Big W offered free clothing to bushfire victims. Source: File/AAP

“Big W Noosa Civic are helping anyone in need, if anyone needs clothes or anything, go see the awesome staff. Amazing to see the support,” she wrote.

Many others agreed and praised the retailer for its efforts.

“How beautiful. That warms my heart guys! Be proud to work for Big W,” one person wrote.

“Just hope the greedy people don't go in and take advantage of it, awesome job,” another said.

“Warms my heart Big W Noosa Civic, you should be so proud of yourselves.
Great community spirit right there,” a third person wrote.

Among the stack of clothing visible in the photo were T-shirts, jumpers and hi-vis clothing.

About 400 people have had to flee to evacuation centres due to fire raging on the boundary of the Sunshine Coast Regional Council and the Noosa Shire Council.

Fire was potentially lit by arsonists

Water bombers are battling the blaze from the sky as crews try to get the upper hand.

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Deputy Commissioner Mike Wassing said the loss of two homes and a shed had been confirmed in the Peregian Beach area.

But acting Sunshine Coast mayor Tim Dwyer says only one house is confirmed lost, with 10 other properties suffering varying degrees of damage.

Three Queensland teenagers are being interviewed by police after allegedly boasting on the internet they lit one of the devastating fires on the Sunshine Coast.

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