NATIONAL VOLUNTEER WEEK

Danny O’BRIEN (Gippsland South) (09:45): It is Volunteer Week, and I want to place on record my support and thanks to volunteers for the incalculable value of the work they contribute to our communities. Whether it is at a service club cooking sausages at a community market, running drinks for the local footy or netball club, helping out with Meals on Wheels or planting trees at a local creek to improve the local environment, there are so many ways volunteers make a difference in our communities. There are also those who put themselves in harm’s way for the benefit of others – our CFA volunteers; SES, who we celebrated yesterday with Wear Orange Wednesday; Marine Search and Rescue; and community ambulance volunteers and many others who do so much to protect the rest of us. In Gippsland South volunteers carry a huge load – well above their weight. In South Gippsland shire 22 per cent of people volunteer, compared to 13 per cent across the state, and the figures are similar in Wellington shire and Latrobe city. So this Volunteer Week I simply say to our volunteers: thank you.

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