During Volunteers Week 2018 (June 1-7) Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) would like to say thank you to the thousands of volunteers that make an incredible difference to their local communities in Staffordshire.
“National Volunteer Week is an ideal opportunity to say a huge thank you to our volunteers. Throughout the week we have showcased some of the great work our volunteers do and hopefully demonstrated what an enjoyable and rewarding experience volunteering can be. Whatever you give up your time for, taking some time to help others and meet new people can be really satisfying."
In 2017 SFRS’s volunteers gave more than 11,000 hours of their time in a variety of roles. There are more than 100 volunteers within the Service who carry out a variety of roles including prevent work, public engagement and helping with training exercises.
A few of the Service’s volunteers shared their thoughts on their experiences of volunteering at SFRS. Jane Evans said: “It is a wonderful place to volunteer and there are various activities you can take part in. I love the culture, it is so open and everyone says hello.
“Some of the things I do include being in the Drama Queens; where you are the person being rescued from car crashes or smoke filled buildings during training exercises. I also work with small children helping them learn about road safety through the Safe + Sound programme, which is multi-agency covering all areas of safety. I also work with vulnerable people and I’m also a Dementia Champion, which means you do a full days training on Dementia and Alzheimer’s, and then you can train other people to be Champions which is important as the firefighters will often meet clients who have Alzheimer’s or Dementia.”
Volunteer Malcolm Calhaem, who is also in the Drama Queens, said: “They (the Service) are very good at integrating you into the Service so you feel like you are a part of it.
“There’s a lot of scope for volunteers doing Safe and Well visits and a lot of prevent work, we also do driving; I drive the Prince’s Trust minibus and do demos of the VF4 car – a road safety vehicle which goes to various venues. They sit inside with the windows blacked out and a video plays with the car moving up and down simulating a crash then the Fire Service smashes the windows.”
Above: Malcolm takes part in a training exercise acting as an injured member of the public.
Rob Barber, Deputy Chief Fire Officer, said: “The generous contribution made by our volunteers is very humbling and I’m so proud of the daily contribution they make to the communities of Staffordshire. A lot of our volunteers already have full-time jobs and families, and all the other commitments of daily life yet they find the time to help keep their communities safe.
“National Volunteer Week is an ideal opportunity to say a huge thank you to our volunteers. Throughout the week we have showcased some of the great work our volunteers do and hopefully demonstrated what an enjoyable and rewarding experience volunteering can be. Whatever you give up your time for, taking some time to help others and meet new people can be really satisfying." There are lots of opportunities to volunteer, even if it’s only for a couple of hours a month, there will be an organisation out there that would welcome the help.
For more information about volunteering for Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service click here.