Woman on mission to reunite with husband in Australia, one plastic bottle at a time

November 19, 2023 BY

Ms Leigh runs a small counselling business named Inspired & Equipped. PHOTO: ELLIE CLARINGBOLD

THE OWNER of a Geelong-based counselling service is seeking plastic bottle donations from the local community to help bring her husband to Australia.

Indi Leigh, 33, hopes to use the state’s new container deposit scheme (CDS), launched November 1, to help fund the costly visa process to allow her husband to move to the country permanently.

Intended to help curb litter, the CDS allows Victorians to earn a 10-cent refund when they return any eligible bottle, can or carton at one of the designated Reverse Vending Machine, automated deposit or over-the-counter refund locations.

Ms Leigh first met her partner online in March 2022 where they connected over their faith, entrepreneurial mindset and shared desire to grow as individuals.

They became engaged five months later, in August, after meeting in person for the first time.

“It was like we’d known each other for forever,” she said.

Ms Leigh and her husband met online and bonded over their faith, entrepreneurial mindsets and a desire to grow as people. PHOTO: SUPPLIED


“I just knew it was the right thing.”

Her partner, who prefers not to be identified, currently lives in Africa and works as a photographer.

Ms Leigh said, since their wedding in February earlier this year, the separation had been challenging.

“We knew ultimately there was going to be that period of time where we would be apart.”

“We knew it was for a purpose and that we’d been brought together for a reason.”

Comfort lies in the knowledge that their separation is not indefinite.

With only Ms Leigh’s parents and a small number of friends able to make the wedding, the couple are looking forward to the opportunity for a second celebration once they are together in Australia.

In the meantime, Ms Leigh continues to operate her small counselling business, Inspired and Equipped.

“I really enjoy what I do and just seeing people overcome their obstacles, work through trauma and hurt and the things they’ve been through in their past,” she said.

Indi Leigh, 33, at her wedding in February this year. PHOTO: SUPPLIED


Her clients are broad, ranging from six years of age to 85.

“There’s two areas where I really love to work,” Ms Leigh said.

“One is around identity, so helping people to understand who they are to then go on and realise their potential and achieve their dreams.

“The other area being trauma.”

She said she’s hoping to get together between 150,000 and 200,000 plastic bottles in the coming months to ensure her husband can “come out here as soon as possible”.

For those willing to donate, she wants things to be as convenient as possible for them and hopes the community can view it as “working together to achieve a result that’s mutually beneficial for both of us.”

If you’d like to donate items to Ms Leigh, you can contact her on 0403 956 632.

To find CDS deposit locations near you, visit https://cdsvic.org.au/locations.\

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