What's it like to be a Volunteer?

Hero of the month!
Chris Hovey

Age: 34

Bellingen Unit

'The NSW SES has given me the opportunity to help my local Community while giving me so much personally in return.'

Our volunteers

Volunteering with the NSW State Emergency Service is an exciting and rewarding way to give back to your community. But don't take our word for it! Read some volunteer stories and decide for yourself. If you want to thank SES volunteers, the best day to get involved is on WOW day

  • Reba Skuthorpe
    25
    Goodooga Unit
    Volunteer
    'Go for it! It's okay to step outside of your comfort zone and try something new, for me this was one of the greatest choices I have made.'
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  • Mathew Wallis
    44
    Auburn Unit
    Planning Officer
    'I feel immensely proud every time I don the orange uniform as I know that I’m helping others.'
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  • Paul Burg
    38
    Camden Haven Unit
    A/local controller of the Port Macquarie Hastings LGA
    'I enjoy teaching people, especially newer members skills that will allow them to help someone else or rescue someone in a critical situation and that's what it's all about.'
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  • Kaamilah Kim Barbara Davids
    59
    Campbelltown Unit
    Deputy Team Leader
    "I have been a member for almost 9 years and feel at home."
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  • Michelle De Friskbom
    48
    Bega Unit
    Deputy Unit Controller
    "I am passionate about running realistic training exercises for our volunteer members, I love being part of an awesome team and family".
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  • Owen Pacewicz
    32
    Wollongong City Unit
    Volunteering with SES
    My name is Owen Pacewicz and I am a volunteer with the Wollongong City NSW SES Unit.
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  • Evelyn Lester
    63
    The Hills Unit
    Local Controller
    I hold a volunteer position as Local Controller for the NSW SES, The Hills Unit.
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  • Daniel Mowbray
    31

    Communication Officer, State Headquarters
    My name is Dan, 27 years old and have been a part of the NSW SES for about 7 years.
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  • Katie Moulton
    33
    Parramatta Unit
    Community Engagement Coordinator & Media Officer
    I volunteered for 4 years at the Parramatta unit. I enjoyed my time at the NSW SES so much that I have pursued a career with NSW SES in the Sydney Western Region office as the Community Engagement Coordinator.
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  • Lily Bokulic
    19
    Sutton Unit
    Deputy Team Leader, Community Engagement Officer and Duty Officer
    'The opportunities to gain new skills as well as travelling for training and operations is pretty rewarding.'
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  • Teon West
    19
    Hornsby Unit
    Member
    "If you're thinking about it, do it! Don't waste time thinking about if you should join."
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  • Zhanna Smolovich
    33
    Parramatta Unit
    Volunteer
    'That was probably the deciding factor for me - I can get involved as much as I want to, without sacrificing my other interests and having to take time off work.'
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  • Geoffrey Kiehne
    58
    Gilgandra Unit
    Local Controller
    'I wanted to help build community resilience. Knowing I am making a difference is what it is all about.'
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  • Esther Giam
    46
    Randwick Unit
    Community Engagement Officer
    'I only work 20 hours a week. This allows me to be flexible and use my spare time to give back to the community.'
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  • Tam Viet Hoang
    34
    Bankstown Unit
    Team Member and Australian Volunteer for International Development
    "Having a sense of purpose and being part of a bigger family committed to helping others is probably what brings me the greatest joy."
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  • Chris Hovey
    34
    Bellingen Unit
    Team Leader
    'The NSW SES has given me the opportunity to help my local Community while giving me so much personally in return.'
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  • Tim Keown
    48
    Albury Unit
    Community Engagement Officer
    'I grew up in a rural area where everyone in the community had to help each other, especially in hard times. '
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  • Steve Cliffe
    53
    Wollongong City Unit
    Local Controller and NSW SES Vertical Rescue Capability Development Group Chair
    "It's really rewarding to be able to help out people in need of our assistance."
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  • Elaine Mason
    58
    Port Macquarie Hastings Unit
    Volunteer
    'Quickly it developed in to a love of helping people when they are at their most vulnerable.'
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  • Tom Nicholls
    24
    Shellharbour City Unit
    Operations and Community Engagement Coordinator
    "Joined SES at Shellharbour City Unit in 2013 when I was 18 and haven't looked back since!"
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  • Zakia Patel
    30
    Queanbeyan Unit
    I am currently the Deputy Local Controller of Operations in our unit
    "As soon as I walked in and saw the first display, I knew it was something I wanted to be part of. I signed up for an interview to be a new recruit. I've loved volunteering for NSW SES ever since."
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  • Lyndsey Crammond
    40
    City of Sydney Unit
    Volunteering Team and Retention Specialist
    "I wanted to do something for my community and a friend recommended the NSW SES."
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  • Sandra Smail
    58
    Port Macquarie Hastings Unit
    Operations Officer
    "I have family in the SES and their feedback persuaded me to join the service."
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  • Michelle C
    31
    Kogarah Unit
    Deputy Team Leader Media Liaison Officer
    'I have a background in graphic design and event management and it has been refreshing to bring those skills to the unit'
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  • Katrina Frankish
    22
    Hornsby Unit
    Media Officer
    "I am the newly appointed Media Liasion Officer at the Hornsby Unit. My role includes maintaining the Hornsby SES Facebook, Instagram and Twitter page to keep the public up to date and informed."
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  • Cassandra Cowell
    36
    Orange City Unit
    Team Member- Allrounder. There's nothing I've come up against that we haven't been able to tackle.
    "Previously being a model and graphic designer, I'm an example of people volunteering from all walks of life."
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  • Parryn Sellings-Bibby
    19
    Coffs Harbour City Unit
    Meet Parryn Sellings-Bibby an 18 year old volunteer from the NSW SES Coffs Harbour Unit who as well as volunteering for her local SES, is also undertaking her first year of University studying a Bachelor of Nursing Degree.
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  • Roslyn Bickford
    59
    Harden Unit
    Unit Controller and Local Controller
    I’ve always believed in the ethic “what you put into something you’ll get back twice-fold”.
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  • Stacey Dengate
    29
    Coniston Unit
    Team Leader
    'NSW SES is one reason why I decided to pursue Nursing. I love helping and supporting people in the time of need.'
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  • Simone Burrows
    22
    Singleton Unit
    Community Engagements and Media Officer
    'One day I could be using a chainsaw, the next I'm helping organise a press conference. There really is a role for everyone!'
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  • William Chi
    18
    Parramatta Unit
    Volunteer
    'Great things never come from comfort zones'
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  • Sharmin Hossain
    31
    Ku-ring-gai Unit
    Community Engagement Officer
    'I really appreciate how the NSW SES provides its members with the opportunity to gain skills and experience in a wide range of areas.'
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  • Kai Ho
    22
    Auburn Unit
    Storm and Flood Damage Team Operator
    'The mateship, teamwork and work culture are all outstanding in my unit. People are definitely my favourite part of joining the SES.'
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