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Who should I call in a life-threatening emergency?

Always call 000 ("triple zero") in any life-threatening emergency situation

Are SES members paid?

All SES volunteers are exactly that - people who volunteer their time to help their community and, therefore, they are not paid.

The Victoria SES has approximately 150 paid staff who work at our various headquarters around the state.

I’d like to volunteer - what do I need to do?

Go to the official SES website ( and follow the links to the "Volunteer" page.  This will place you on our list and we will contact you when we host an information session or begin a recruitment drive.

Can anybody become a SES volunteer?

Yes!  There are roles for people with all range of skills, ages (18 and above) and backgrounds.  We provide a comprehensive training program to all new members which assumes you have none of the skills required, but accommodates you if you already do.

How often do you recruit?

We run a recruitment course at Malvern approximately every two years but this can vary depending on our numbers.  Once you are on our list (see link above) then we will let you know via email when we plan on running information sessions and/or recruitment drives.

Do I need to live in the Malvern area to become a member?

Yes you do.  In case we are called out, you must live close enough to our local headquarters to respond within the time allotted.  This means you need to live within our response boundaries.  If you live outside of our boundaries, we would direct you to the most appropriate neighboring unit.

Are volunteers expected to leave their workplace at a moment's notice if called out?

No.  We are all volunteers and so are not expected to leave our workplace during work hours.  After work hours, however, we are expected to respond if we are on call.  At Malvern, you will be scheduled to be on call for one week out of every four.

If you are available from time-to-time during work hours, that would be helpful.

What are the training expectations?

We train every thursday night except for when we take a break over the christmas holiday period.  Members are expected to attend 60% of these training nights in order to remain operational.  In addition to this, there are other training courses for more advanced skills (chainsaw, working at heights, etc) which are usually held on weekends.

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