WHEN police officers were injured by explosions at a property at Derrinallum recently, the local Red Cross unit put together care packages to send to them.
It’s little gestures of kindness and generosity like that which typify a century of work by the Red Cross.
Volunteers from the organisation were recognised for their efforts in Corangamite Shire with a council-run civic reception last week.
Timboon, Camperdown, Cobden, Derrinallum, Skipton and Terang Red Cross units were represented, with over 80 people in attendance.
The reception not only recognised the work of Red Cross volunteers but also celebrated 100 years of the Australian Red Cross and coincided with World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day.
Corangamite Shire mayor Chris O’Connor said Red Cross remained an important organisation thanks to its compassion and generosity.
“Red Cross leads the way in humanitarianism at both an international and local level,” Cr O’Connor said.
“In 1914, the Australian Red Cross started as a branch of the British Red Cross at Government House in Melbourne.
“Volunteers were asked to assist with making production parcels for soldiers.
“One hundred years later, the local Red Cross sent a package to the policemen injured in the recent explosion at Derrinallum. While a lot has changed in 100 years, it’s comforting to hear that some things remain the same.”
The Corangamite Red Cross branches had also played a role helping out in the region during recent natural disasters, such as the Skipton floods and the Pomborneit fires, Cr O’Connor said.
During the ceremony last Thursday, Cr O’Connor highlighted the work of the Skipton Red Cross, which marks 75 years this year, and the efforts of four volunteers who have been with the branch for more than 50 years.
“Marjory Oddie, Bessie Wilkie, Doreen Wilkie and Thelma Fletcher have been a part of Red Cross for as long as they can remember,” he said.
“In an era where ‘lending a hand’ involves a lot more paperwork and regulation, it’s always good to be able to believe in the work we do and know that we make a difference.” Volunteers in Glenelg Shire will also be recognised for their contributions to the community in special ceremonies this week.
As part of National Volunteer Week, which begins today, Glenelg Shire Council will celebrate its unsung heroes with four receptions scattered across the municipality.
The ceremonies will be held at Casterton Town Hall tonight from 6pm, Heywood Community Hall on Wednesday from 6pm, Portland Civic Hall on Thursday from 6pm, and Nelson Community Hall on Friday from noon.