If you’ve ever considered signing up to do volunteer work in the community, one organisation worth contemplating is Quirindi VRA.
Quirindi VRA is the local squad for the Volunteer Rescue Association which is a recognised not-for-profit search and rescue organisation that provides primary response assistance during emergencies.
“Quirindi VRA is one of about 50 Volunteer Rescue Association branches right around NSW,” explained Quirindi VRA Captain Col Stewart. “In most cases, VRA squads are the primary rescue unit within their area.
“Whether it’s for a motor accident, industrial emergency or vertical rescue operation, the VRA is the service that’s commonly called out to deal with these situations alongside services such as the Ambulance and Fire Brigade.”
The Quirindi branch of VRA currently consists of 11 volunteer members and has been operating in the area for close to four decades.
“Quirindi Squad was formed in the late 1970’s as a combined team with the Liverpool Range Rescue Squad. It was later divided into Murrurundi squad and Quirindi squad,” explained Col.
Because the organisation is made up of volunteers with their own jobs and commitments, Quirindi VRA is always on the lookout for new volunteers to help alleviate the pressure placed on current squad members.
“We are open to all sorts of members over 18,” explained Col. “Male or female, everybody is welcome. We have training to equip people as rescue operators and as such they receive certificates which are recognised Australia wide as a national standard certification and recognised by employers as recognition of commitment and skills.
“Naturally we can get called out seven days a week, day or night. Our members attend as they can with work and other commitments and if they can’t get away they can’t get away. However, we’ve never been unable to attend a situation.
“Because people can get tied up with work commitments during emergencies, new members are very welcome,” he stated.
According to Col, being a member of the VRA provides assistance to the community but can also bring a sense of teamwork and individual achievement to those who take part.
“It’s something we can do to help the community and there’s a good sense of personal pride and comradeship and we are able to learn new skills,” he explained.
If you have an interested in volunteering for Quirindi VRA, call on 0429910740. Alternatively you can visit www.rescue.org.au for further information.