Damascus Students volunteer after St Patricks Day Fires
More than 30 Damascus students studying VCAL volunteered their time from Thursday 24th – Friday 25th May at the Cobden Fire Relief, as part of the Blaze Aid Organisation.
Blaze Aid is a volunteer-based organisation that works with families in rural Australia after natural disasters, such as fires and floods. Working alongside families they help to rebuild fences and other structures that have been destroyed or damaged as well as cleaning farm properties.
The South West region of Victoria was affected by fires on St Patrick’s Day this year, and the students chose to volunteer in this way as part of their Religious Education Social Justice Unit – ‘Pay it Forward’.
Year 11 student Celeste Towers said that the students really wanted to help people in need within the local community, and identified the Blaze Aide organisation as they do such great work in assisting families that have lost a lot of their land in natural disasters.
“Farmers are the primary suppliers of food and without farmers, we don’t eat and food is a requirement for survival,” she said.
The students stayed in the area overnight to help Blaze Aid re-build fencing and donated perishable goods to the families affected by the fires.
“Getting involved with Blaze Aid enriched us as students in so many ways; it helped us to develop our Christian beliefs and values, helped us to learn empathy, build strength and character, assisted in developing our works skills in a different environment and enabled us to face the reality of seeing people who have lost everything.”
“We really enjoyed helping the community and gained a greater appreciation for what we have and the opportunities we are given.”