Sandra Smail


Port Macquarie Hastings Unit

"I have family in the SES and their feedback persuaded me to join the service."

Tell us a bit about yourself and your role within NSW SES?

I am the Operations Officer and organise the administration of the Port Macquarie Hastings Unit. I have also assisted as the Incident Controller when needed. I have been apart of both the Storm and Road Crash Rescue (RCR) teams. I also featured in the documentary Storm Season.

Why did you join NSW SES? Anything that was deciding factor for you?

I have family in the SES and their feedback persuaded me to join the service. I was in the Red Cross Disaster Support Team but was unable to travel out of area at the time due to family commitments. With SES I was able to do a lot of volunteering within my community.

What is your favourite part about being a member of the NSW State Emergency Service?

One of the best things about being a member for the service is being able to help local people in times of need.

Also building the skills that allow me to work well under stressful situations and when deadlines are due.

What are the various skills you have learnt along the way?

I have completed First Aid, enhanced Microsoft Excel skills and developed Leadership skills. I have been pushed out of my comfort zone to complete various activities and courses during my time as a member.

What advice would you give to others that are thinking to join?

There are many different areas to get involved with and volunteer. It will suit all ages, gender and skill level. You might be surprised how your existing skills can contribute in helping your community.

Thinking about becoming a member like Sandra but not sure what you'd like to do? Find out about our various volunteering roles

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