Ben Fisher, Paramedic, NSW Ambulance Service
My nickname is Wig, I got this when I was 17 and it has stuck ever since. I am an ambo with the NSW Ambulance, I live on the Coast with my wife and children. I feel blessed in my life and this is one of the reasons I feel that giving back is something I wanted to do. I first read about DRA (TRA) in the Sydney Morning Herald and wanted to know more. I googled the group and felt that this Organisation would be a great fit for me being that I am interested in doing aid work. I have done some aide work overseas particularly in PNG and I have really enjoyed this. I am a self-confessed serial underachiever, and I am the first to say this. I really enjoy giving back to the community and seeing how what we do impacts the families we help.
From Op Dexter I will take away some enhanced fencing skills and some great relationships with some great people. I love that this organisation is built for a purpose for people to benefit both giving and getting back. It is a healing process for us much as it is for the community. I wouldn’t have recognised this as concrete as that in the beginning but retrospectively I see that it is a healing role for all. I am looking forward to deploying again both domestically and hopefully when we can internationally.
In November and December of 2018, a bushfire originating from Deepwater, Queensland southwest of Gladstone raged through the region for two weeks. The community lost 25 homes, multiple outbuildings and incurred significant stock losses. One local resident unfortunately lost their life and there were countless others who were injured while fighting to save their properties. The fires burnt more than 75,000 hectares in and around the townships of Rosedale, Miriam Vale, Lowmead, Baffle Creek and Mount Maria.
Twenty months post bushfires, some community members remain without power and continue to reside in makeshift dwellings. Disaster Relief Australia (DRA) was dedicated to go back into these communities to continue our recovery works, including debris removal, chainsaw work and repairs to fence lines.
Disaster Relief Australia (DRA) launched a Type 4 bushfire recovery operation in the southwest area of the Gladstone Regional Council in Central Queensland on Wednesday, 14 October 2020.
Our team was onsite for six weeks to clear debris and will work within the Mid Murray Council area to assist the community with post-flood clean-up.
Riverland Flood Recovery Operation
Area of Operations
Recovery Taskings for Operation Dexter
As part of Operation Dexter, DRA provided the following capabilities:
- Damage and Impact Assessments
- Chainsaw work and tree removal
- Debris removal
Work orders completed
Community costs saved
Queensland Bushfire Recovery 2020
DRA’s bushfire recovery operation in Queensland