Instagram influencer slammed for 'insensitive' bushfires fundraiser

An Instagram influencer has been criticised for an “insensitive” bushfire fundraiser.

Sarah Stevenson, 27, a Queensland-based influencer who blogs under the name “Sarah’s Day”, posted a video on Wednesday telling her followers $1 from every one of her skincare products sold would go towards the St Vincent’s Bushfire Appeal.

"I was donating to some of the charities and I was thinking 'What else can I do to give back to the bushfire victims and everyone involved?'," she said in an Instagram story.

Pictured is Sarah Stevenson, 27.
Sarah Stevenson, 27, is being criticised for telling people $1 from each skincare product of hers they buy will go towards bushfire fundraisers. Source: Instagram/ Sarah Stevenson

"If you purchase one of my products ... then $1 will go towards that and I'm just so happy that I can give back."

Ms Stevenson’s products range from $16.95 to $58.95.

Ms Stevenson thought the idea would be “be more fun” that an online fundraiser and “get everyone involved”.

While ostensibly a kind thought, she was seemingly taken aback by the response as not everyone was keen on her fundraising methods, with some labelling it a “cheap trick”.

The 27-year-old self-titled “holistic health princess” said she got “so much hate” for her post in a video she posted to her account.

One man wrote that her $1 for Vinnie’s is a “cop out”.

Firefighters work to save a house on Bullocky Way, Possum Brush, south of Taree in the Mid North Coast region of NSW.
Firefighters scramble to save a home on Bullocky Way at Possum Brush. Source: AAP

"Go 50 per cent or 100 per cent of proceeds for 48 hours to be genuine. It's currently a cheap trick to boost profit,” he wrote.

A woman criticised her for using the word “fun” in promoting the fundraiser.

“It's truly insensitive and to clap back at the people who called you out for it shows you actually don't understand the issue,” she wrote.

Sarah Stevenson, 27, is pictured.
Ms Stevenson explains the hate she's received from her idea and defends it. Source: Instagram/ Sarah Stevenson

Ms Stevenson said in the since-removed video that the criticism was an example of “damned if you do, damned if you don’t”.

“If I hadn’t done anything with my products to support the bushfire foundation I would have got hate,” she said. “If I promote 100 per cent of the profits I still get hate for promoting my products.”

She called the amount of “hate” she received “disgusting” as her fundraiser was coming from a “really honest, authentic, giving place”.

Yahoo News Australia has contacted Ms Stevenson for comment.

Members of the CFA work to create fire breaks ahead of the Gospers Mountain bushfire in Sydney, Australia.
CFA firies create fire breaks ahead of the Gospers Mountain bushfire on Wednesday. Source: Getty Images

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Queensland braces for more fire drama

Firefighters will make the most of a brief weather reprieve to strengthen containment lines as Queensland braces for worsening conditions.

More than 70 fires are burning across the state as firefighters work frantically to contain the risk with the fire threat set to intensify on Friday.

Moist coastal winds will bring short-lived relief on Thursday before westerly winds dominate conditions the next day.

The weather bureau warns the westerlies will push extremely dry air back towards the coastal fringe.

Resident Thorsten Kels with one of his surviving chickens Emma, at Lake Cooroibah Road, Noosa.
Noosa resident Thorsten Kels nurses one of his surviving chickens Emma. Source: AAP

"We would expect to see the maximum temperature quickly return to four-to-eight degrees above the November average on Friday and into the weekend," a spokeswoman said.

"When we combine that with the dry air, we expect to see elevated fire dangers once again as we head toward the weekend."

On Wednesday, 'leave now' warnings were issued for the Sunshine Coast, Kilkivan, at Woodgate, south of Bundaberg, and at Pechey near Toowoomba.

Firefighters extinguish spot fires in the suburb of Noosa North Shore, in Queensland.
A firefighter douses flames on Noosa North Shore. Source: AAP

A large fire was also burning in difficult terrain near the five-star Spicers Peak Lodge on the Southern Downs.

There are several fires west of the Gold Coast, including in the Scenic Rim, and a blaze in Cobraball near Yeppoon in central Queensland continues to be of significant concern.

It has claimed 13 of the 14 houses lost in Queensland since late last week.

With AAP

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