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Wheels turning for CFA volunteers
To celebrate National Volunteer Week (13-19 May), CFA is saying “thanks a million” to its volunteers, families and employers for everything they do. This week we will feature a series of profile stories to highlight the great work and diversity of our volunteer members.
In offering support to its volunteer members, MartyrsBus Service has become somewhat of a volunteer as well.
For the past seven years, management at the company have made their buses and drivers available to take local strike teams to incidents around Victoria.
Maroondah Group Officer and Martyrs bus driver Ken Reed said the company was always there to help.
“They’ve always been brilliant and happy to make whatever changes to staffing to make it possible,” he said.
Ken has been an employee at Martyrs for 13 years, a volunteer for 56 years and Group Officer for 35 years.
There are about six CFA volunteers at Martyrs from Warburton, Wesburn, Mt Evelyn and Wandin brigades, all of who are supported when they need to step into their role as CFA volunteer.
Martyrs Managing Director Bryan Sultana said Ken had been an integral part of the relationship between CFA and Martyrs.
“It’s all about locals helping locals. We’re really community focused and everyone works together,” he said.
“When it comes to helping CFA, it’s hard to say no.”
Martyrs Operations Manager Bill Pine said while it often takes a bit of reshuffling, they are always willing to help at any time of day or night.
“Sometimes it means swapping drivers or calling additional staff but we never need to cancel charters and all requests are always filled. When CFA needs it, I’ll receive a call from Ken and that can be at any time, sometimes even 3am.”
Mr Pine said the 2012/13 fire season has been their busiest, driving crews to major incidents including Gippsland, Portland and Donnybrook. They also drove crews to Moorabbin Airport where they were flown to other locations in Victoria.
“We will continue this relationship for as long as possible, it works really well,” Mr Pine said.
CFA Operations Officer Graham Bourne offered his sincere thanks to Martyrs for their support of its CFA volunteers.
“We really do appreciate everything Martyrs does to support CFA.”
- Story by Charlotte Azzopardi