St John’s cel­e­brates 50 years

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News -

Hor­sham’s St John’s Am­bu­lance mem­bers have marked a mile­stone in their com­mu­nity ser­vice.

The Hor­sham branch has op­er­ated for 50 years, pro­vid­ing first-aid train­ing, health and emer­gency sup­port to the com­mu­nity.

Mem­bers cel­e­brated their his­tory with re­gional man­ager Brenda Clay­ton and Hor­sham mayor Mark Rad­ford at Hor­sham’s White Hart Ho­tel on Satur­day.

Di­vi­sion man­ager Loris Zaal said the Hor­sham branch had 10 ded­i­cated vol­un­teers.

“It was a won­der­ful din­ner, and this is a won­der­ful ser­vice for the com­mu­nity if they need first aid, and for emer­gency man­age­ment,” she said.

“Our vol­un­teers are spread around the area, in­clud­ing four from Nhill and one from Stawell, and we’re on call 24 hours a day.

“What we find the hard­est is keep­ing vol­un­teers.”

Mrs Zaal said re­cruit­ing and hold­ing onto vol­un­teers was dif­fi­cult be­cause of peo­ple’s fam­ily and work-life com­mit­ments.

She said many or­gan­i­sa­tions were shut­ting down be­cause of this.

“When older mem­bers leave there are no younger ones com­ing through to fill their spots,” she said.

St John’s will host a pro­mo­tion at Hor­sham Plaza on Fri­day, July 19 to give peo­ple an op­por­tu­nity to learn about the ser­vice and en­cour­age more vol­un­teers.

Mrs Zaal said she had been a St John’s vol­un­teer for 32 years.

“I did my first-aid course with Peter Oak­ley, who has passed away now, be­fore join­ing,” she said.

“You only needed to have ba­sic first-aid train­ing back then.

“I have been di­vi­sion man­ager now for 20 odd years.”

Hor­sham’s branch meets on the se­cond and fourth Tues­day of ev­ery month at Hor­sham’s Fire Brigade Hall and com­pletes spe­cial­ist cour­ses to pro­vide first-re­sponse re­lief in the com­mu­nity.


50 YEARS OF SER­VICE: St John’s Am­bu­lance re­gional man­ager Brenda Clay­ton, front left, and Hor­sham di­vi­sion man­ager Loris Zaal, front right, look back on 50 years of St John’s ser­vice in Hor­sham at a cel­e­bra­tory din­ner.

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