The second round of WA Volunteer Service Awards for 2018 celebrated 53 West Australians for their dedication to community service organisations like the Kings Park Guides, Red Cross, and Volunteer Fire and Rescue brigades.

The Awards, presented on Wednesday 5 December by the Governor of Western Australia, Hon Kim Beazley AC, and Department of Communities Assistant Director General Helen Nys recognised long-serving volunteers, including 3 with over 50 years’ service.

Volunteers were presented with certificates in two categories:  25 to 49 years of service, or 50 years or more of service to the same organisation. 

Mr Raymond Drage was among those honoured at the Awards for his contribution to the Mount Barker Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service.

Photo of Raymond Drage
Image: Rayond Drage at the Volunteer Service Awards on 5 December.

Raymond is now the longest serving volunteer at the Mount Barker VFRS, and now sees his role as largely about mentoring the new volunteers coming through, and educating them about the toll the work can take on their mental health.

“After a big exercise or an incident, the most important thing is saying to the team ‘Look, I’m here if you need a chat.’”

“Sometimes they don’t think they need to talk about it, so I just do my best to spot when something might be up, and encourage them to use the resources and professionals available.”

Mr Bruce Bailey JP and Mrs Rosalyn Stewart were acknowledged for 50 years of volunteer service at the Awards.

Photo of Bruce Bailey and Rosalyn Stuart holding their certificates.
Images: (L-R) Bruce Bailey and Rosalyn Stuart

Bruce served as a Justice of the Peace as part of his career as a Magistrate, and now provides JP services to his local community. Rosalyn has volunteered at Woodbridge House since it was vested in the National Trust in 1968, where her skills at caring for heritage artefacts has been invaluable.

The Volunteer Service Awards presentation coincide with International Volunteer Day, which is held on 5 December each year.

The theme for International Volunteer Day 2018 is ‘Volunteers build resilient communities’, and focusses on local community volunteers who contribute to making their communities more resilient against natural disasters, economic stresses and other crises.

22 recipients were presented their Award at the ceremony, with the remainder receiving theirs by post.

The list of Volunteer Service Awards recipients is available on this website.

Group photo of the Volunteer Service Awards recipients.
Image: Awards recipients after the presentation ceremony.