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CFA passion drives ‘good citizen’
Donna Zabinskas, a member at Greendale Fire Brigade, is an animal lover down to her core.
***Donna Zabinskas is a CFA volunteer who is being profiled as part of a special series ‘Celebrating CFA Women’ in recognition of International Women’s Day on 8 March***
Around seven years ago she founded an animal welfare organisation called BADGAR, but has been working with native animals for around 17 years.
She runs the Greendale wildlife shelter, which falls under the umbrella of BADGAR. She is also a 3rd Lieutenant of the Greendale Fire Brigade.
She’s on the ground for both firefighting and wildlife welfare, rescuing animals following bushfires.
Last year she was deployed to the Grampians and spent around three months working with both CFA and DELWP on the northern side of the mountain. She recalls a huge number of animals down.
“We had over 94 Eastern greys, Swamp wallabies and Red-necked wallabies and supported three shelters there,” she said.
“Working with the local people is really important, both as a firefighter and rescuer as the impact on local people is massive.
“Over 500 animals had to be put down. It was pretty horrific. They are very high numbers.”
For all her community efforts she was crowned this year’s Moorabool Shire Citizen of the Year.
“It was one of our brigade members who put up the nomination. That was very unexpected and a shock,” she says.
She encourages other women becoming CFA members.
“We have over a half a dozen active female firefighters and many more women support members. We would certainly like to see more women; but we’re really fortunate with our numbers of female members.
“CFA is a really good thing to get involved with. It’s about being part of the community, knowing about fire and learning about it. I would strongly urge other women to take up the course.”
Read about lots of other CFA women here.