Welcome to:

The SES Volunteers Association of Western Australia Incorporated (SESVA)

(A prescribed Association for SES Volunteers in WA)

"one Association many issues"


Welcome to the website of the State Emergency Service Volunteers Association of Western Australia Incorporated (SESVA)The SESVA was formed in the late 1980’s with the objective of providing a focus for representing the views of SES Volunteers on issues which affect them.  The SESVA has developed the ability to strongly voice the opinion of the volunteers  where, when necessary, to the benefit of all the Volunteers of the SES, where the action of a single Volunteer or small group would not be as effective.  The SESVA represents SES volunteers on a number of committees and working groups and has regular meetings with DFES.


SESVA role is to represent the views of SES Volunteers to all levels of Government, DFES and other agencies on all matters affecting  SES volunteers and the way in which we serve our communities.

SESVA Committee of Management

There is a Committee of Management to control the Association.  The Management Committee consists of the following members:

Powers of the Management Committee

The Management Committee is the deliberative body in the Association with powers to make and direct policy, make, amend, or rescind the Constitution, and generally to take such actions as it considers necessary for the furtherance of the Association and its objects.  The general management of the affairs of the Association is vested in the Management Committee. 

Executive Council

An executive council, consisting of the President, Vice President, Secretary and any two committee members shall take care of the day to day affairs of the Association. The executive council may authorise payments on behalf of the Association.

Objects of the Association

  • Be an independent and representative body of the volunteers of the State Emergency Service of Western Australia and the Volunteer Emergency Service
  • Promote and communicate knowledge and information to and amongst the volunteers of the State Emergency Service of Western Australia 
  • Provide an effective voice for the volunteers of the State Emergency Service of Western Australia
  • Operate a fund or trust for the benefit of volunteers of the State Emergency Service of Western Australia

Current SESVA Activities:

  • Regular contact with DFES Commissioner and Senior Executive to discuss strategic, policy and high level issues
  • Monthly meeting with DFES Chief Superintendents and stakeholder managers to discuss operational and other issues
  • Meeting on a regular basis with the Minister for Emergency Services
  • Meeting on a regular basis with the Shadow Minister for Emergency Services
  • Membership of subject matter groups, PPE, vehicles, equipment, training, communications and legislation
  • Co-partnering with DFES to organise the annual SES conference and awards night
  • Attendance at AFAC conferences
  • Attendance at Regional Local Managers meetings
  • SESVA website, twitter  and facebook management
  • Publishing SESVA Journal, calendar and diary
  • Attending to local issues when requested by SES Units
  • SES Vehicle Licence Plate Project
  • SESVA has a seat on both the National SESVA Board and National Council – providing a National voice for SES Volunteer Associations
  • Providing input to the National representative on the Australian Emergency Management Volunteers Forum (AEMVF) on matters that could affect SES Volunteers at a National level
  • Development of a strategic plan for the SES Volunteers Association
  • A member of the new Emergency Services Volunteers welfare and support fund implementation team
  • Member of the Inter-Agency Working Group (IWG) on the review of the Emergency Services Acts
  • Regular communication from SESVA Regional Representatives to SES Units and Volunteers
  • Provision of an SES Flag to all SES Units
  • Actively promoting the good work SES Units and Volunteers do to support their community
  • Promoting and facilitating sponsorship assistance to SES Units
  • SESVA/BHP Billiton Bus Project
  • Production of SES Merchandise available for SES Members to purchase
  • Planning and conduct of the SES State Rescue Competition
  • Management of the WASES Hall of Fame
  • Plan and conduct and SES Social night (Shin-dig)



You can also read all previous news items in our News Archive

26/05/2015 - Training Info Single Sign On

Single Sign On (SSO) for Training Information
In conjunction with the valuable feedback and support of volunteers, DFES is now able to offer volunteers a new, simplified approach to logging in to the Volunteer Portal; significantly streamlining the registration and sign in process.  The system is online and functioning well and DFES invites you to complete your registration through the SSO.  On completing the SSO registration you will then be able to activate your personal eAcademy account; offering you access to DFES’s online training system.
The links to the Volunteer User Guide and a document titled Important User Information and Contacts are below.  Both documents provide useful information which are worth reading before commencing your registration.

In the few weeks the SSO has been on line, more than 10% of the SES Volunteers have registered and are signing on using this system.
If you experience any difficulties in registering with or signing in to the Volunteer Portal, please contact the Volunteer Portal Support Team (8.00am – 4.00pm Mon – Fri) on
Phone: 9395 9306  or  webmaster@dfes.wa.gov.au

DFES Pathways Project Team

265/05/2015 - State Rescue Challenge - SES

The SESVA had done a lot of planning for the State Rescue Challenge, including booking of sights for the conduct of the event and accommodation for the judging panels and competitors.  As the Association has not been able to obtain suitable funding, the Committee has cancelled the State Rescue Challenge for 2015.  Further to this the National Disaster Rescue Challenge in 2015 is being held in the ACT in September and there is no SES team participating in the NDRC this year.  The SESVA Committee has put a proposal forward to DFES for funding of the State Rescue Challenge every second year with funding for the NDRC on the other year.
SES Units will be advised on any progress of this proposal.

Gordon Hall
SESVA President

25/05/2015 - DFES Conference

Volunteers Conference

The annual Volunteers conference will be held on the 19 and 20th of September at the Perth Exhibition and Convention Centre.
The SES Volunteers will have their Service Stream on the Saturday. The suggested subjects from Volunteers are being considered for inclusion in the program. The intention is to provide the latest updates and to fill in the gaps where Volunteers require further information.
We have included all suggestions into the draft program so far. Some of these will be subject to approval by DFES.
The Sunday sessions are more general across a number of Services.
A number of SES Service specific sessions are being considered by DFES and include;

  • Sessions on safety and actions in relation to Solar safety, Agri-ponics in the roof space and Drug labs;
  • Training update, Volunteer Qualification Program and Q&A from the floor
  • Search – ownership, structure, different roles of WAPOL, SES, Canine, mounted etc
  • Short 15 minute sessions on Vehicle weights, Insurance, Peer support

Please note that none of these sessions have been approved by DFES

Lin Booth - SESVA Secretary

25/05/2015 - SES Awards Night

Annual SES Volunteers Award Ceremony

Planning for this event is well advanced.   DFES advised earlier this year that funding for the annual awards night was being reduced in accordance with government policy and to align all Services towards equity in funding.  The Association has been working with DFES and have come to an agreement for the 2015 Awards Ceremony.  It was agreed that the event would retain its prestigious style with banquet style seating, including three course meal rather than a sundowner style.

The new venue is the River View Rooms 4 and 5 at the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre with a maximum capacity of 250 guests (similar number as last year) with round tables and stage,

  • The ticket price will be discounted from $75 per person to $50 per person
  • Three course meal and alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks included in price
  • The event will commence at 7:00pm and conclude at 10:00pm; and
  • Live music will be provided for the duration of the event.

Registrations will be advised on this site as soon as they are open.  Please register early to ensure your seat is reserved.

Gordon Hall
SESVA President

18/05/2015 - Happy Birthday Gosnells SES

Gosnells SES Celebrates 35 years Service
A mile stone in the history of Gosnells SES, a celebration of 35 years service to the community of Western Australia.  The unit was formed at the request of the local government, “Town of Gosnells”. The SES was to provide a rescue capable emergency service to the area as there was no full time emergency service in the area at the time. It was to overcome an emergency service vulnerability to the area under the new SES formation that had been established by the state and federal governments. The transformation of Cold War instigated Civil Defence to a volunteer rescue service capable of meeting community needs was occurring across Australia at the time.

Councillor Ken Clarke, who proposed the concept, then, went on to become the first Local Coordinator (now Local Manager) with Jim Ridgwell one of the original unit SES volunteers still serving today.

Current Local Manager, Paul Hollamby, said Tthe Gosnells SES unit volunteers should be proud of the contribution the unit has given to the community of Western Australia in the past 35 years. Whilst SES volunteers don’t join for accolades, the unit’s history of National Medals, Australian Honours and other awards show the significant commitment of the volunteers”.

Construction for a new and modern Local Headquarters is due to start soon on the Kenwick Link Bypass, a co-location with the City of Gosnells Bush Fire Brigade.
Today (Sunday 18 May), the unit sold sausages at Bunnings Maddington, whilst promoting the message to the community about preparing for storms. We were able to provide a good demonstration at times with today’s weather.

Phillip Petersen ESM                  Gosnells SES Volunteer


Jim and his wife Denise after accepting his 35 year DFES/SES Service Award

Alan White and his wife Jan, with his 10 year DFES/SES Service Award

08/05/2015 - Goldfields Challenge 2015

The Goldfields SES Challenge was developed to replace a regional training weekend with each scenario conducted in a simulated operational environment.  The Goldfields SES Challenge continues to be one of the best training weekends in WA by exposing SES personnel to a range of disciplines in one weekend.  The continued support we receive from the metro units is greatly appreciated and as we head towards our 12th Goldfields Challenge, Kalgoorlie-Boulder SES prides itself on hosting the Challenge each year with approximately 100 personnel participating in the 2 day event.  The planning and logistics requires months of organising with the committee starting in October for next year’s event.

The Goldfields provides a unique environment for the Challenge to be held in with various bush sites from Lake Douglas 12km from Kalgoorlie through to Karalee Rocks 207km to the West of Kalgoorlie which allows 10-12 scenarios to be completed.  Kalgoorlie-Boulder SES starts setting up Challenge Base and the stand sites the week before the event.

A team of 5-7 personnel is given a SMEAC and required to complete as much of the task as possible in the allotted time.  The scenarios are all assessed by qualified instructors who score each team out of 100 based on knowledge, technique and skills used as well as team work and team leadership.  From the most complex tasks of rope rescue through to knots and communications the Challenge has something for everyone. It is great way to refresh and maintain skills for the most experienced whilst also providing new members the opportunity to broaden their understanding, knowledge and skills in each discipline.  We have SES members who have attended the event for a number of years and each year they get something different, while first time participants say they will be back the next year!  As a SES member progresses through their own unit they may change roles from being a team member, progressing though to a team leader for a few years and then attending as an assessor or other staff in later years.

The scenarios cover a range of first aid, communication systems, storm damage, land search, cliff rescue, chainsaw operation, 4WD technique and recovery, camp duties, navigate urban and rural environments and have also included at times road crash rescue which does not form part of most unit’s profiles.
A number of the Kalgoorlie-Boulder members participated in a rogaine event in Perth and brought the idea back to include in the Challenge.  A rogaine was included into the schedule and was enjoyed by all at last year’s event and looks like becoming a regular scenario.
David Price from Rockingham-Kwinana has been attending the Challenge for a number of years and has seen the event grow and develop into an event that other regions are now modelling their Regional events on.

“Rockingham uses the Challenge to develop new teams leaders and team members as the event is run under simulated operational demands” says David Price.  He also said “I like the comradery and the friendly competition from other units”  A good news story from previous Challenge events is the team from Mundaring.  The same SES members participated each year and showed great improvement coming from last place the first time they attended to gaining 2nd place a few years later.  It is a great way to measure not only personal improvement but team achievement as well.

See you at Lake Douglas on 31 May to 2 June 2015!

Everything you need to know about the Goldfields Challenge is included in the handbook ==>Information Handbook 2015.pdf

06/05/2015 - Kalbarri SES News for May 2015

 Kalbarri News for May

Mac Holt reports that Kalbarri SES had 3 teams deployed in succession over 10 days to a search for a missing prospector couple at a location around 30km from Sandstone (A journey around 700km from Kalbarri by Vehicle). The search ground was rugged with many shafts and tunnels. WAPOL as HMA provided control with SES search teams leaders. Many police officers were shipped in to augment the search teams. One deceased person was found. Large un-friendly racing goanna lizards were disturbed from their homes in the ground, whilst millions of very friendly flies tried to distract us.

View the full report ======>Kalbarri-SES-Report-2015-05.pdf

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