Red Cross Emergency Services volunteers who worked on the front lines of last October’s bushfires in the Blue Mountains were proud to join with fellow volunteers to meet the Royal Family on their official visit to the Blue Mountains today.
“We’re honoured that our volunteers, some of whom are still helping the Blue Mountains community to recover from the savage 2013 fires, had the chance to met the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and share their experiences of the fires,” said Danny Croucher, Greater Sydney Regional Manager at Red Cross.
“The Royal visit was a huge boost to people in this community, some of whom are still getting back on their feet, and to the many volunteers who helped to fight the fires and assist the community,” said Danny Croucher, who himself lives in the Blue Mountains and whose family had to leave their home during last year’s fires.
“One volunteer who had the chance to meet the Royal Family was Sue Roden, the Red Cross Emergency Services Liaison Officer for the Blue Mountains, who lead two teams of volunteers and assisted greatly during the fires.
“Another long time volunteer who took part in the event was Carolyn Luscombe who has lived in Winmalee, a high-fire risk area in the Blue Mountains region, for 37 years. She is the team leader in the Lower Blue Mountains and helped at the Springwood evacuation centre, one of several around the state set up to shelter thousands of people who had to leave their homes.
“In 2014, we’re celebrating the centenary of Red Cross in Australia – 100 years of people helping people in times of war, responding to disasters, and everyday in local communities across the country.
“The grim reality is that the need for Red Cross to assist communities to prepare, respond and recover from natural disasters is greater than ever, and it will surely continue in the next century of Red Cross in Australia,” said Danny Croucher.