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24/11/2014 - News from Gosnells SES

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

Paul Hollamby
Local Manager
Gosnells State Emergency Service Unit
0409 110 571
PO Box 687
Gosnells WA 6990

21/11/2014 - International Volunteer Day (IVD)


International Volunteer Day

International Volunteer Day (IVD) is celebrated each year on 5 December and was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 1985.  IVD provides volunteer organisations and individual volunteers with the opportunity to raise the public awareness of their contributions to economic and social development at local, national and international levels.
IVD is celebrated worldwide with thousands of volunteers involved in a range of events as diverse as the volunteers themselves.  Events include clean-up campaigns, conferences, exhibitions, morning teas and many other activities all aimed at highlighting the role of volunteers in their communities.  Volunteering Australia supports IVD and thanks the over six million Australians who volunteer their time. We encourage the broader community and all volunteer based organisations to get involved with the celebrations in your area.
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21/11/2014 - Training News

SES Training Pathways Being Rolled Out

The DFES Training Group has commenced the rollout of the SES Training Pathways to all SES Units.  The SES Volunteers Association has been working closely with DFES for fifteen months on the SES Pathways to ensure the training model will meet the needs for the tasks that the SES Volunteers perform.  The concept of the package being rolled out, is to address the actual tasks that the SES Volunteers perform, with the option to go down the path of national competencies where available.

If there are any areas that you believe need to be addressed, I encourage you to send any feedback to DFES at  An email cc to the SESVA at would be greatly appreciated so we can work through the feedback with DFES as well.

Please see attached document by DFES outlining the Pathways ====>141121 SES Pathways Rollout.pdf

Gordon Hall

19/11/2014 - News from the Broome SES

The Broome SES Unit held an SES Week function at the Mangrove Hotel in Broome on Saturday 15th November.  The Unit’s Rescue Section Team Leader – Matt Puncher – is the Executive Chef at the Mangrove Hotel and did the bulk of the organising for the event to coincide with National SES Week.  The night included outside food stalls set up under the SES marquees, live music, a rescue demonstration and encouraging everyone to come along dressed in orange. The Mangrove Hotel kindly provided some prizes for best dressed and various door prizes.  The SES crew conducted a rescue demonstration which involved a ladder slide rescue of a dummy from the top balcony of the hotel. The team was led by newly appointed Deputy Local Manager Rob Philips and the outgoing long-serving Local Manager Laurie Hicks provided a running commentary of the rescue.  The night was a great success for all involved and was an opportunity for the Broome SES Unit to promote themselves and provide an insight into some of the tasks that they are called on to assist with in the community. They are hoping that the event may generate some interest within the town for people to come and join the team.

Some pictures taken at the event:

The outdoor food stalls set up

Mangrove Hotel staff and patrons dressed in orange

Rescue Demonstration – sending up the Stokes Litter

Rescue Demonstration – on the way down with the rescued dummy

Matt Reimer
Acting Superintendent | Kimberley | Department of Fire and Emergency Services
Kimberley DFES House | Corner Carnarvon & Frederick Streets | Locked Bag 2743 Broome WA 6725
T: 08 9158 3209 | F: 08 9193 6744  |  M: 0417 977 584 | E:

19/11/2014 - SESVA Buses Rollout Update

The SESVA briefs LMs on the status of the SES Buses



Last night the SESVA project team (Gordon Hall and John Capes) briefed the SES Metro Local Managers for the units who will be receiving the SESVA/BHP Billiton buses.   The first of the SESVA 10/14 seater Buses have now arrived in Western Australia.   The buses spent their first week with Toyota Australia having the ADR requirements completed. They are now being transferred to Big Rock Toyota for pre-delivery actions.

The SES livery will commence later this week and then the WAERN radios and warning lights will be added. The buses for the Metro area are expected to commence roll out in the second week of December followed by the country buses in January.

The grant from BHP Billiton will also cover cost of Vehicle registration and CTP Insurance, Vehicle Insurance and Annual Servicing for the first five years.
The purchase of these vehicles was only possible by the generous support of BHP Billiton’s Community Development Program, which has contributed more than $200 million over the past five years to health, education, and Indigenous development and community infrastructure initiatives in Western Australia.

SESVA President Gordon Hall said “That the Association is proud to be a part of the BHP Billiton Program and the use of these buses by SES Volunteers, will be of great benefit to their community during emergency events, as well as during training and preparation of SES Volunteer responders.”

The main use of the buses will be;

  • Transport of SES Search and Rescue teams to other areas to conduct their activities,
  • General SES Unit activities (Operations, training  and community events),
  • Make available the bus during emergency operations that DFES is involved in,
  • General transport of Incident Management team members,
  • Evacuations of community members during emergency situations including cyclones,
  • Returning community members to their homes after emergency situations,
  • Escorting community members to impact areas to enable them to view their properties.
  • Fire support transporting Firefighters to and from fire grounds which enables shift changes to leave firefighting appliances on scene

13/11/2014 - WOW what a day it was

SESVA thanks DFES for their Wear Orange Wednesday Celebrations

As part of the WOW celebrations the SESVA attended a Search and Vertical Rescue exercise organised by DFES staff and conducted by SES Volunteers.  The exercise went off very well with SES Volunteers finding the casualty, transporting the person to the top of the Cliff and lowering her down the cliff face at Blackwall Reach into the Belmont Rescue Boat.  The exercise was well planned and executed.

Many SES Volunteers and DFES staff attended and amongst the group were the Minister for Emergency Services, Joe Francis MLA, and the DFES Commissioner, Wayne Gregson.  DFES arranged for a number of media outlets to attend and at the end the exercise there were interviews conducted by the Minister and the SESVA President.

DFES arranged a morning tea at Point Walter during which a debrief of the situation was conducted.

DFES staff then held an afternoon tea at the Emergency Services Complex in Cockburn. A short Video of SES Volunteers doing what they do, with commentary from a number of Volunteers, played for all to see.  Commissioner Gregson acknowledged the good work the SES Volunteers do in their community and thanked the DFES staff for their support of the SES Volunteers and this very important service.  The SES Volunteers Association thanked many staff and in particular the DFES Media group who put in a fantastic effort to make sure the WOW day was a success and the awareness of the SES was raised.

Please see below a number of photos taken on WOW day.

Also link to Channel 10 News

Gordon Hall
SESVA President


Briefing for the search team and media

Cliff and river rescue

All dressed up

The Minister and SESVA President Gordon Hall being interviewed

WOW what a great orange tie

WE are all in the same boat

SES Volunteers moving the casuality for the exercise

DFES ladies wearing orange for WOW day

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