It’s all going swimmingly for our flood volunteers
Sunbury: All 10 pass level 5 training with flying colours – now they need some help, with £8,000 to be found for equipment
SPELTHORNE’S Sunbury Flood Volunteers (SSFV) have passed their level 5 Water Incident Management Course, enabling them to register as a national flood asset. The SSFV charity first came together to assist residents after last year’s flooding. All 10 SSFV members completed training at level 5 Water Incident Management last week and all passed, with 75% achieving 100%. Alsion Griffiths, who set up the group, said: “I can’t believe what we have achieved in the past seven months. I’m very proud of my team, whose efforts have made this happen.
“It feels amazing to receive the awards. I’m very grateful that we have been recognised by the local council, Rotary and No 10 Downing Street. “The training for me has been very important, not only to keep us safe and help our residents, but to reward all the volunteers who have been out at weekends since February to this day. Without them there would be no rescue unit.”
Earlier this year the volunteers underwent Level 1 Water Awareness training in Poole. This taught them some basic forms of rescue and how to help at a flood rescue site. The group is now planning to start Level 2 First Responder training early next year. This will mean they will be able to become even more involved with rescues. “The main reason we have undertaken all of this is that if another flood was to arise, SSFV members would be qualified to safely and efficiently deliver humanitarian aid, including clean water, food, and medication to surrounding residents,” said Mrs Griffiths.
“If a flood were to occur, we could now respond first, manage the area, perform rescues or call in other services to attend.
“Unfortunately, none of this can be achieved without our personal protection equipment (PPE).
“For example, flood suits, dry suits, helmets, etc. “We have been given a quote of nearly £8,000 for this. Without the PPE, we are not able to commence level 2 first responder either.” “I have managed to get our volunteers training provided by £2,500 from a Heathrow Communities Together grant and £2,000 from Surrey Flood Recovery Appeal earlier this year but this was just for the training alone.”
Councillor Daxa Patel has donated £350 and Cllr Denise Saliagopoulos £750 to the cause but the volunteers need more if they are to carry on their crucial work within the commu- nity. Mrs Griffiths added: “We are in need of volunteers as well. We have places for people to join us and receive free training. We are looking for any age, any level of fitness. “We are a group of young and old, thin and fat. Basically, we will take anyone who would like to help and integrate them into our team, no matter what their capabilities.” To donate
visit www. gofundme. com/ SFVolun teers or contact Mrs Griffiths at alisonlgriffiths@ hotmail.com for more information.
Local heroes: Months of selfless hard work from Spelthorne’s Sunbury Flood Volunteers saw all 10 pass their level 5 examinations – an important step in preparing them to provide invaluable support in the event of more flooding.