Orange marks volunteer support
The Karratha State Emergency Service Unit is encouraging residents to dress up today in its trademark shade of orange in celebration of local volunteers.
Today is Wear Orange Wednesday, an SES awareness day held during National Volunteer Week that encourages people to wear the colour to acknowledge the importance of volunteering in the community.
Karratha SES Unit volunteer and WOW organiser Barry Harrison said volunteers were particularly important in regional towns such as Karratha because they dedicated their spare time to performing vital services that would not be provided any other way.
“They support their local community because there’s no Government-funded commitment to those services, so without the volunteers, a lot of things wouldn’t happen,” he said.
“People take emergency services for granted. They come from Perth and all of a sudden everyone in those emergency services, except the police, are volunteers.
“It’s volunteer SES, volunteer marine rescue, volunteer firies, and a lot of volunteer ambulance officers.
“We’re quite blessed that people have actually committed to give their time for the volunteer services.”
Karratha SES Unit volunteer Matt Bager said the fact few people wore orange every day made it an ideal colour for an awareness campaign.
There are 44 qualified volunteers in the Karratha SES Unit trained to respond to emergency and disaster situations from cyclones and floods to land searches.
Other SES units in the Pilbara include Roebourne, Tom Price, Exmouth, Hedland and Newman.
For more information or to sign up as a volunteer with the Karratha SES, visit the headquarters at 14 Balmoral Road during training at 7pm on Mondays.
Karratha SES Unit volunteers Barry Harrison, Matt Bager, Cristy O’Keefe and Kayla O’Keefe.