Paint the town orange

Paint the town orange

This Wednesday is Wear Orange Wednesday (WOW) Day, a national day of thanks dedicated to the 5000 plus Victoria State Emergency Service (VICSES) volunteers who support their local communities during flood, storm, landslide, road rescue, search and rescue, and more.

The East Region (Gippsland) has 517 active volunteers and last year they responded to 2370 requests for assistance.

The majority of these calls for help were in relation to storm (1610), road rescue support (184) and flood relief (124).

Every day, these volunteers are prepared to drop everything at a moment’s notice, put on orange overalls and respond to requests for assistance from Gippsland communities.

“Wear Orange Wednesday is a well-deserved day of recognition for all our volunteers,” Bairnsdale SES unit controller, Karina Osgood, said.

“Volunteers are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, doing everything from removing fallen trees restricting access to carrying out road rescue procedures with the Jaws of Life.

“Whether it’s a weekday, weekend, evening, Christmas, Easter – the pager goes, we go.”

As well as assisting in times of emergency, SES volunteers also undertake regular training and skills maintenance.

Volunteers also spend time out in their community teaching people how to stay safe during an emergency like flood or storm and how they can be prepared.

Wear Orange Wednesday is held as part of the National Volunteer Week and the SES encourages everyone to wear orange for the day, at work or school, as a simple way of showing our SES volunteers that you appreciate their hard work and dedication to community safety.

To share a message of thanks to VICSES volunteers this WOW Day on Facebook or twitter use the hashtag #ThankyouSES.

PICTURED: SES volunteers Frank Carter and Wendy Ammitzboll preparing for a land search and rescue.