In two years Samuel Corby has risen from a state emergency service (SES) recruit to duty officer of the Sutherland Shire unit.
And this week that hard work paid off after he was named the 2016 NSW SES Young Volunteer of the Year at a special ceremony at Parliament House.
He joined the SES as an 18-year-old after finishing high school and has since clocked up 1200 hours of volunteering experience.
He said joining one of the emergency services had always been a goal of his.
‘’In the SES you get called to a little bit of everything,’’ he said.
‘’Probably the biggest was when we were on standby during the Lindt siege.
‘’We also helped out during the Kurnell tornado. We organised for the schoolkids to go home when the second storm hit.’’
He has training in storm and water response, land and water rescue, communications and First Aid and said that helped when called to a emergency.
‘’You do get that rush of adrenaline when you’re first called out,’’ he said.
‘’Then you fall back and rely on all the training you’ve done.’’
He is one of a number of young volunteers who make up the Sutherland Shire unit and said luck and hard work were behind his rise up the ranks.
‘’It’s all happened very quickly in the last two years,’’ he said.
‘’If a opportunity comes I’ve just said yes.’’
Minister for Emergency Services David Elliott congratulated Mr Corby on the win.
“I congratulate Samuel on his dedication and commitment to providing an invaluable community service and for encouraging other young people to consider joining the NSW SES to make a difference in their communities,” he said.
“The NSW Government has worked hard to attract and retain young volunteers and this award highlights the success the NSW State Emergency Service has had.”
NSW SES Acting Commissioner Greg Newton said he was pleased to see increasing numbers of young people joining the service.
“Young people have a great deal they can offer their communities and it is terrific to see the NSW SES providing the opportunity for them to contribute,” he said.