A newly installed water fountain at Victoria Park means everyone can have access to clean drinking water.

The fountain is the first of three to be purchased by the Rotary Satellite Club of Stratford for the district, with the other two to be installed in other parks later this year.

Daniel Stieller, immediate past chairperson of the group, says the $1558 cost of each fountain was raised by the group's regular fundraising events.

"We have held a car wash, helped at various community events in exchange for a koha, and have worked hard as a group to raise the money needed."

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Access to clean water is one of Rotary's six focus areas says Daniel, and providing drinking fountains for the community was a way to put this into action.

"Water is the healthiest option for people, and water fountains help to reduce the number of single-use water bottles being used."

Victoria Park was chosen as the location for the first fountain as it is used by many different groups of people, says Daniel.

"From children playing in the playground, to people playing sport on the field or people going for a walk or run, the area is popular and well-used."

The cost of installing and maintaining the water fountains sits with Council as they have been gifted to the community by the Rotary Satellite Club of Stratford.

The fountain was formally unveiled by the mayor last week, in front of representatives from Rotary Satellite as well as Melanie McBain, Stratford District Council acting parks and property officer and Jon-Paul Heather from Downer Stratford, the contractors responsible for installing the fountain.

Mayor Neil Volzke says he was delighted to be able to formally unveil the Victoria Park drinking fountain and appreciated the efforts of the Rotary Satellite group in raising the money for the fountains.

"Every year, when we do our annual customer satisfaction survey, people mention the need for drinking fountains in the parks and walkways. As a Council, we appreciate the gift of these fountains to our community and I know they will be well used."

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He would be making use of them himself.

"Whenever my grandkids are visiting, we come and play in the park here and they always want a drink after they have been running around. Now they can run over to the water fountain and have a refreshing, cold drink whenever they want."

Emma (left) and Samantha McLaughlin enjoyed trying out the new water fountain.
Emma (left) and Samantha McLaughlin enjoyed trying out the new water fountain.

During school holidays, Victoria Park has been busy with plenty of children, and some of them have already tried out the new fountain.

Sisters Emma and Samantha McLaughlin were both impressed with it.

"We have lots of drinking fountains at school so I know how to use them, but we haven't had one in the park here before. It's good because I don't have to go far to get a drink."

Six-year-old Emma says water is her favourite drink and she thought the fountain would be used by her and her sister.

Samantha, 8, says drinking water is always the best choice.

"It's good for you and tastes nice."