New headquarters for volunteers

2019-03-19 06:00
DRM local area head, Warren Dawson, DRM volunteer Andy Greenwood, Mayco member for safety and security JP Smith and Mayco member for transport Felicity Purchase.

DRM local area head, Warren Dawson, DRM volunteer Andy Greenwood, Mayco member for safety and security JP Smith and Mayco member for transport Felicity Purchase.

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The City’s Fish Hoek Disaster Risk Management (DRM) Volunteer Unit officially launched its new base in Clovelly on Saturday 9 March.

The unit has been in existence for 42 years and consists of 36 active volunteers and 13 reserve volunteers who come from the surrounding communities of Masiphumelele, Ocean View, Fish Hoek and Muizenberg. The unit is the oldest running volunteer unit in the city and some of its members have been in service for up to 35 years.

Mayco member for safety and security JP Smith said the Fish Hoek volunteers epitomise the culture of volunteerism and service that Cape Town has. “As the City, we are fortunate to have close to a thousand volunteers in the emergency and enforcement services.

These brave men and women are selfless in their dedication to helping us build a safer city for all, and the Fish Hoek volunteers lead from the front. I hope that their new base will serve as a home away from home and that it will provide the space and opportunity to recruit even more members in the future,” he said.

During the move to the new premises, the crew spent a total of 5 121 man hours of labour cleaning, painting, fixing and getting the building ready and up to scratch so that contractors sent by the City could do some vital repairs such as the roofing, plumbing, tiling, and electrical work.

The new premises have a training hall, crew quarters for downtime and a gym.

On average, the unit accumulates about 14 000 working hours and responds to 211 emergency incidents a year, where they assist the community and render other services. Volunteers receive training in first aid, firefighting, traffic control, flood mitigation, and event safety. The volunteers use these skills provided by the City to serve their respective communities in times of disaster, during City events and even assisting with beach safety during summer.

The DRM Fish Hoek volunteer base is one of 14 units across the city. Other units are based in Atlantis, Althone, Belhar, Gugulethu, Khayelitsha, Macassar, Melkbosstrand, Melton Rose, Milnerton, Mitchell’s Plain, Ottery, Strand and Scottsdene. The total number of volunteers is 410.

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