Home » SES Goodna volunteer highlights diversity in Ipswich

SES Goodna volunteer highlights diversity in Ipswich

Guy Hazlewood    May 30, 2024    2 min read   

As National Volunteer Week unfolded from May 20 to 26, Ipswich celebrated its volunteers from diverse backgrounds, including Goodna SES volunteer, Maranda Buchanan.

This year’s theme, ‘Something for Everyone,’ underscores the wide range of volunteering opportunities available in the city, from nature restoration with Bushcare to engaging with visitors at the Ipswich Visitor Information Centre.

SES volunteer Maranda Buchanan. Source: Ipswich City Council

Maranda Buchanan, a Pasifika woman who has dedicated about six years to the Goodna SES Group, embodies this spirit of diversity and inclusion.

Maranda believes that inclusive recruitment processes are crucial for establishing the SES ‘orange family’ as welcoming and accepting of cultural diversity.

“At inductions, when we talk about breaking down those barriers, you feel the sense of community build. If we are up front about it right from the beginning, it demonstrates we mean it, and it becomes a shared responsibility to build that culture within the group,” she said.

“Then it also breaks down the barriers between us and the community – if we can get more volunteers who reflect our community diversity, we can better help.”

Buchanan’s commitment to volunteering has seen her involved in major operations for the city and state, including the Springfield hailstorm, 2022 floods, and Cyclone Jasper.

Reflecting on her motivation, she said, “My nanna always said we should always help those who are around us, because you never know when it could be an angel in disguise. And SES hit that spot.”

Ipswich Mayor Teresa Harding emphasised the importance of volunteering in the community.

“In Ipswich, this certainly rings true. We have volunteering opportunities from nature restoration with Bushcare through to engaging with visitors at the Ipswich Visitor Information Centre,” Mayor Harding said.

“Ipswich is also a culturally diverse city, and a Welcoming City, and we give our appreciation to people from all backgrounds who give their time to help their community through volunteering.”

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Guy Hazlewood