An Australian Volunteer Coastguard Innisfail flotilla member awarded a National Medal

Innisfail flotilla member, Mark Petersen, was presented with the National Medal for 15 years of Meritorious Service by Cassowary Coast Regional Council Mayor Mark Nolan.

THE Australian Volunteer Coast Guard Association Inc.’s QF15 Innisfail Flotilla recently held their re-election of executive members at their Mourilyan Harbour headquarters.

Flotilla Commander (Neville Duncan) and Deputy Commander (Garry Steve) were sworn in by NQ Squadron Commodore, Terry Spurrier.

The Executive of the Coastguard remains the same, with Rosemary Hull (Administration), Kathy Hunt (Purser) and Alan Hooper (Training Officer).

A special presentation was made to Mark Petersen, who was recognised for 15 years of continuous diligent service and presented with a National Medal for Meritorious Service and a certificate of congratulations from Federal Member for Kennedy, Bob Katter.  

The National Medal recognises long and diligent service by members of recognised government and voluntary organisations who risk their lives or safety to protect or assist the community in enforcement of the law or in times of emergency or natural disaster.

This includes government services such as ambulance, correctional, emergency, fire, and police forces, and voluntary organisations such as lifesaving, coastguard, or search and rescue groups.

Innisfail’s Flotilla are always seeking more volunteers, especially younger members, to come onboard and be part of a rewarding service.

Those interested in signing up need to be aged 18+, with volunteers required to complete three self-paced induction courses.

This includes basic knowledge of the Coast Guard structure, Seamanship, and Safety, where members are taken for a tour of the vessels and through the headquarters. 

Once all three inductions are successfully completed, members will be sworn in as Provisional Coast Guard Members.

Anyone wishing to be part of the Boat Crew will need to complete a First Aid course and obtain a radio licence. 

There are opportunities for members to further their knowledge and advance in the Australian Volunteer Coast Guard Association, or as a member of the Rescue Crew, by undertaking formal training in all theory and practical aspects of Coast Guard activities.

At present, a coastguard member is required to do duty once every three weekends and the hours are from 8:00am until 5:00pm on Saturday, Sunday, and public holidays (if it falls on your shift).

For those who do not wish to become a ‘boating’ member, there are many other activities in which to become involved, such as fundraising, administration, radio control work, as well as maintenance of the building and surrounds.

At this year’s Innisfail & District Show, the Innisfail Flotilla will have an information stall where those interested can ask questions about the Coastguard and find out how to get involved.

For more detailed information, please contact the Innisfail Coast Guard on 4063 2396, the Flotilla Commander on 0408 635 786, or the Flotilla Administration Officer on 4063 2593.

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