Reflection on a volunteers worth
November is a big month for State Emergency Service (SES) Volunteers. This year, Wednesday 12 November was Wear Orange to Work day, recognised and celebrated throughout Australia. In Western Australia the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) ran the “Think Orange Thank Orange” campaign between 10 and 16 November. Gosnells SES volunteers have been busy preparing for Summer. The effects of Summer Storms, searching for missing persons, and backing up our fellow SES volunteers in the North West are primary roles. We also do a support role for our bush fire volunteers, with the effect that they can spend more time and effort on the fire ground.
Personally I have also committed to Movember to change the face of men’s health. As part of this program, I received an email asking me to forward it on to 10 contacts, to raise awareness and donations. After reading some of the facts I began reflecting on the value of a volunteer. Emergency Service Volunteers are a special breed of volunteers. We don’t find a spare few hours to help out. With family support we train and then prepare for that call, day or night, work day or Christmas day, to respond when the community is in need. That request may go for days or depending on the location or season, floods or fire, go for weeks or happen weekly.
What is surprising is that within the Gosnells SES Unit, at least 25% of our volunteer members do even more community service. Church based charities, dog shelters, local not-for-profits and in my case fund raising, all benefit from these extra ordinary Emergency Service Volunteers.
I feel privileged to be part of this group of habitual community givers. At a time when everybody says that they are time poor, these volunteers who each making a small contribution collectively are huge givers. It is worth remembering that volunteers would not be able to make this commitment without the support of their families and employers. Training with the SES is open to men and women, of all ages over 18. Contact the Gosnells SES on 9459 8015 to find out more about becoming a volunteer.
To find out more about Movember or to make a donation please go to http://mobro.co/paulhollamby
Gosnells State Emergency Service Unit
0409 110 571
PO Box 687
Gosnells WA 6990