Youth & Emergency Response Volunteering Roundtable

Year 9 IGS Student James Poulos met His Royal Highness’s The Prince Edward, Duke of Edinburgh KG GCVO when he visited Marrickville SES last Thursday to chair a taskforce with senior emergency services leaders.

Thank you to James for providing us with the following report: 

“The taskforce met to discuss ways in which emergency service volunteering organisations can attract and retain young people.

“I am a Bronze Duke of Edinburgh (Duke of Ed) participant. I completed the Volunteering Service component for six months at Ashfield-Leichhardt NSW State Emergency Service (SES) unit and now continue to regularly volunteer at the unit.

“I was delighted to be invited to this event by Mr Peter Kaye AM ESM, CEO of the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award – Australia (and my assessor for SES), along with a few other participants who have volunteered not only in SES but in Surf Lifesaving, Rural Fire Service and St Johns Ambulance.

“The Duke was really lovely to speak to. I told him how I really enjoyed learning new skills and helping out at the SES unit, maintaining equipment and other odd jobs. I told him I intend to continue to complete the volunteering service component for my Silver and Gold Duke of Ed awards and that I hope to become an SES member when I turn 16. I also explained to him how I have used my time in Scouts, having just been awarded the Australian Scout Award, the peak award for the Scout section, to help me complete sections of the Duke of Ed. I also spoke with other members of the taskforce about how they should use the Duke of Edinburgh coordinators and Scout leaders to promote and encourage volunteering at an emergency service organisation.

“The skills and commitment to the service to others through Duke of Edinburgh and Scouts places me well to face challenges in my future.”

Congratulations James, your commitment and volunteering service is truly impressive.