More volunteers wanted for Timaru Civil Defence Response Team

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Published: 06 Mar 2020

Timaru District Civil Defence Response Team is putting the siren call out for new volunteers to help the community in its time of need.

The response team, which is looking for another 15 volunteers to come one on board, is funded by Timaru District Council and provides trained responders to support the local community during an emergency event. Team members work alongside and assist the emergency services and other response agencies.

Council Emergency Management Advisor, Lamorna Cooper says that Civil Defence relies heavily on volunteers and, without the commitment of committed and skilled volunteers, services to the wider community in the event of an emergency would be severely restricted.

“Our volunteers come from all walks of life and undertake a range of roles in an emergency, including general rescue, relief, pre-hospital emergency care, cordon controls and welfare services,” she said.

“They have played a significant role in several emergency events, such as the Temuka floods in 2010, the earthquake in 2011 and the Rangitata Floods in 2019.

“Many volunteers tell us that Civil Defence is a great opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to their community, with minimal time commitment.”

Deputy Response Team Leader, Shem Hansen says that the team is aiming to have between 10-15 more volunteers on board for enable them to cope with the emergency events.

“The team is trained to a national standard in light urban search and rescue, flood response, storm response, communications, and other specialist tasks,” he said.

“If you want to become a member of the Response Team, you need to be willing to learn a range new skills, ranging from first aid and casualty handling to rope rescue from heights. Your training commitment would be minimum two hours per week, with occasional training on weekends.”

“Offering some of your time to volunteering in a civil defence capacity is both rewarding and challenging, and we really appreciate your time and support.” Hansen says.

All volunteers are provided with the equipment needed to do the job and to keep them safe.

If you would like more information or want to get involved, contact:

Lamorna Cooper, Civil Defence Manager

Telephone: (03) 687 7210 Or e-mail:

Last updated: 24 Feb 2021