Zeinobiyah “Zobbie” Soetekouw
Zeinobiyah “Zobbie” Soetekouw

Drowned tot’s mum’s personal post before tragedy

Less than 48 hours before police found tot Zeinobiyah "Zobbie" Soetekouw floating face-down on the Hawkesbury River, mum Beccie took to social media to share a heartfelt message about the stresses of everyday modern life.

The mother of 11, and wife of Steve Soetekouw, detailed her fear of shopping centres and buying personal clothing as a "panic", adding the trip to the shops on Monday for herself was a first.

"I have never been shopping for myself … hate it, I get sweats, I panic," she said.

"When I was younger my parents would always give me hand-me-downs … and when Steve and I were dating (and I would start to panic) he would throw me in a change room and throw (clothes) over the door and say 'try this on'.

"So shout out to all the women who are like me."

The 35-year-old's video was posted less than two days before her second youngest child, aged 3, was found floating 100 metres from the family's yacht moored off Brooklyn, north of Sydney.

Zeinobiyah “Zobbie” Soetekouw, aged 3, was found floating face-down on the Hawkesbury River on July 10.
Zeinobiyah “Zobbie” Soetekouw, aged 3, was found floating face-down on the Hawkesbury River on July 10.

Zobbie was found by water police and airlifted to the Children's Hospital at Westmead after efforts to resuscitate the child failed. She was pronounced dead after arrival.

The family of 13, originally from Tasmania, have lived on the boat, Sumbawa, for the past two years.

Ms Soetekouw documents the brood's adventures on a personal blog and Facebook page, which introduces and describes each member of the family - including Zobbie, otherwise known as Miss Independent.

"We are from a small town where we have raised animals for food, from chickens to milking goats and even cattle," the Our Round The World Adventure reads.

The Soetekouw brood with friends.
The Soetekouw brood with friends.

"We thought that our lives were going to stay on the farm and then came the itchy feet.

"So we have put caution to the wind and are now sailing the East Coast of Australia on our 43 foot boat."

In March Ms Soetekouw told the Mosman Daily living on a boat suited the adventurous brood as everybody pulled their weight.

"I'm not as busy as people think I am because we have such a system set up," Ms Soetekouw said at the time.

"We prepare breakfast at night - we have porridge, so we heat the water and put the oats in so it's ready for the morning.

"I don't have to cook dinner for the kids at all - they all do that, everyone down to Amlayah, who's seven. Yasha, Azanyah and Zeinobiyah all help the bigger ones."

Meals are prepared in a 14-litre stovetop pressure cooker, and together the family gets through two kilos of rice or pasta a night and a kilo of meat, as well as vegetables and spices, she said.

The family shops every three days, filling up four large camping backpacks with necessities to take back to the boat.

Ms Soetekouw declined to comment about her daughter's death when contact this week.

A NSW Police spokesman said investigations were continuing and a report was being prepared for the Coroner.

The family, from Tasmania, have
The family, from Tasmania, have