Today is Wear Orange Wednesday, or WOW Day, a national day of thanks dedicated to the SES volunteers across Australia, including many in Gippsland, who respond to a range of requests for assistance.
Here in Gippsland alone, more than 650 of your friends, neighbours and relatives who volunteer with VICSES, support our local communities during flood, storm, landslide, road rescue, search and rescue, and so much more.
In the last year, Gippsland VICSES volunteers responded to nearly 2,700 requests for assistance which included 1,720 downed trees; 180 damaged buildings; 166 road rescue incidents; 103 flood calls, and 238 requests to assist other agencies including Victoria Police.
The busiest Gippsland units were Warragul (498); Morwell (308); and Leongatha (257).
“Our volunteers are the backbone of the Victoria State Emergency Service,” according to VICSES Gippsland Regional Manager, Anthony McLean.
“Their hard work, dedication and selflessness is what makes VICSES such an incredible organisation”.
VICSES is also the largest road rescue provider in Victoria, with 104 units certified for road rescue, with the unit in Moe the most recent to gain accreditation.
During this National Volunteer Week, WOW Day encourages the public to dress in orange as a show of thanks for the invaluable contribution VICSES volunteers make to the community. Those who do can post photos on Facebook or Twitter and share a message of thanks to VICSES volunteers with the hashtag #ThankYouSES.
“Wear Orange Wednesday is a fantastic opportunity for the public to say thank you to all VICSES volunteers, who sacrifice their time to help their community rain, hail or shine,” Mr McLean said.
Keep an eye out for WOW Day Banner flags along the Princes Highway in Bairnsdale, installed with the support of East Gippsland Shire Council.
If you’d like to consider being part of the action, learning new skills and serving your community, you can get information at ses.vic.gov.au/volunteer.
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