Supporting our firefighters
Why volunteering is so important
Throughout New Zealand our volunteer local fire brigades provide an invaluable service to communities. It’s about far more than fighting fires.
These volunteers regularly attend medical incidents, motor vehicle accidents, severe weather events and all kinds of other requests for help. They’re ready to go day and night and are on call 24-7. It’s work that’s equally demanding and rewarding.
The role also requires the support of those close to the volunteers – their families, friends, and workplaces. At a recent event at our local station Universal Packaging and other local businesses were recognised for this support.
Donna, our Service Coordinator, has been volunteering as a firefighter here in the Palmerston North area with the Bunnythorpe Volunteer Fire Brigade for eight years.
Her passion and commitment to the work is unwavering. It’s why, when joining Universal Packaging, her first question was simple: “Will you allow me to attend calls during the day?” Understanding the importance of supporting volunteers, the team didn’t hesitate in our response.
It’s not just about helping the community either – the personal development of staff is also important. Volunteers also have the opportunity to advance their knowledge and firefighting careers through the TAPS programme. The skills learned here only enhance what they bring to their everyday work. For Donna, the volunteer journey has been incredibly worthwhile.
“Words are hard to explain how it makes me feel,” she says. “Knowing that I have the skills to help others is a big part of it, as is the comradeship and support I get both in the workplace and the brigade.”
Abby and Stacey attended the local event to represent Universal. As the photos show they got right into everything, with a station tour and uniform fitout (naturally the question arose, “How do you move with all this gear on, especially climbing into the appliance?”) There was also a ‘turnout’ demonstration – the standard result of when Donna’s pager goes off.
At Universal Packaging we are immensely proud of Donna and the team at the station. If employees approach your company keen to be Fire and Emergency volunteers, we’d wholeheartedly recommend supporting them. For both company and community, the value is immeasurable.
Stacey and Abby from the Universal Packaging team at the local fire brigade’s event.