Blog: By Akira Kelly, AWE VIC Chapter Lead

The Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council has reported an increased risk of bushfire across most of Australia over the 2023/24 fire season, with reports it is likely to be the most significant bushfire season since the 2019-20 black summer fires.

Many AWE members are actively working in or aware of volunteering opportunities, and now is a great opportunity to share opportunities with friends and family who may want to be involved in supporting their communities this fire season. In addition to volunteering for a local fire agency, there are many other opportunities for people to get involved in supporting the community, including the following:

  • Red Cross Emergency Services Volunteer roles vary from helping people prepare for emergencies to registering details of those who are displaced or whom families are searching for in a time of emergency, to assisting in running community projects supporting communities recovering from disaster – Volunteer in Emergency Services
  • Other emergency services such as the SES offer a range of volunteering roles. Check out the SES in your area for opportunities.
  • Civil Defence in New Zealand offer a variety of ways to volunteer – Volunteering National Emergency Management Agency
  • Seek Volunteer lists volunteering opportunities across Australia and New Zealand with categories including Emergency Response and Disaster relief roles – Emergency Response volunteer opportunities in Australia
  • Many states and territories have volunteering portals where you can explore a range of volunteering opportunities

Remember it’s important that people sign up as volunteers early to avoid the difficulties faced by agencies and organisations with spontaneous volunteers.

AWE recognises that volunteers play critical roles before, during and after emergencies and disasters, and our communities are significantly strengthened by their skills, time and dedication.