Wear Orange Wednesday celebrating Eden's 'dream team'

Team work is the dream work: Eden SES volunteers Bradley Chalker and Richard Lamacraft. Photo: Rachel Mounsey
Team work is the dream work: Eden SES volunteers Bradley Chalker and Richard Lamacraft. Photo: Rachel Mounsey

It seems there are no limits to what the Eden State Emergency Services volunteers can do. Whether it's rescuing people off cliff edges, attending to road accidents or just fixing leaky roofs - it's all part of the job.

Following in his family's footsteps, kitchenhand Bradley Chalker became an SES volunteer four years ago at the age of 16. He is the youngest team member of the Eden troupe and like fellow volunteer Richard Lamacraft, 71, he takes the rescue missions calmly in his stride.

"There are some situations where we have to act fast like in a crash situation where people are trapped in vehicles. It's important we go about our work calmly, we can't afford to make a mistake," Mr Chalker said.

"I love the moment when I see the relief on people's faces, knowing that we gave them a chance when it could have been worse, that's when the adrenalin kicks in."

Mr Chalker said the added bonuses were the thank you cards and smiles he receives after attending to an emergency.

"I can be walking down the main street and people will stop and thank me. It's a great feeling of accomplishment and I think it brings you closer to the community."

Ex-Navy serviceman Mr Lamacraft has been a volunteer with the SES for seven years. He said as well as the pride and satisfaction he gains from knowing he is helping people out, he also loves the team work involved with the SES.

"There are so many facets to the SES and everybody has an important role to play. It doesn't matter if you are out on rescues, maintenance, communications or what age you are. We all complement one another. It's always a team effort," he said.

There are currently 31 volunteers that make up the Eden SES branch and Mr Lamacraft said everybody did whatever they could.

"Everybody works comfortably within their limits. That's another way we complement each other," he said.

"If you asked me to take part in a land search, to hike up 20 kilometres of mountain, it might be beyond my limits and I might think about it a bit more. But there is always somebody who can."

Both men agreed other bonuses they have found are the qualifications they have gained while volunteering for the SES. Mr Chalker said he had gained 13 valuable qualifications and was looking forward to gaining more with time.

"I reckon we will keep volunteering while we physically can," Mr Lamacraft said.

"Team work is the dream work," Mr Chalker added.

Wear Orange Wednesday is being celebrated all over Australia today, May 22. People are encouraged to wear splashes of orange or go full orange to celebrate SES volunteers all over Australia.

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