CELEBRATING 29 years as a firefighter Kevin ‘Billy’ Boyle of Lyndoch has been awarded the honour of being on the cover of the Barossa Valley White and Yellow Pages.
It was not only his work as a firefighter that got him onto the White and Yellow Pages but his continuing volunteer efforts as an Australian Professional Firefighters Foundation member.
As a member of the foundation Billy contributes a percentage of his wage to the foundation to ensure that 100 per cent of the donated money goes to the Women’s and Children’s Hospital paediatric burns unit and to fire victims.
Fundraising events such as the annual Firefighter Ball has been helping fund the children’s burn survivor camp, Camp Smokey.
“The ball is always held in May,” Billy said.
“All funds raised from the ball go to the kids camp (Camp Smokey) and any funds left over go to funding campaigns.”
The campaigns help to decrease the number of children admitted to a hospital’s burn unit by providing parents and children with information on how to stay safe around fires and hot objects
In the near future members of Australian Professional Firefighters Foundation hope to purchase a SmokeBuster, which is valued at one million dollars.
The SmokeBuster is an interactive fire truck that takes participants through a real life fire experience.
Another part of Billy’s role as a member of the Australian Professional Firefighters Foundation is to go to schools to show the older students the consequences of bad decision making when behind the wheel of a motor vehicle.
It is thanks to the members of the foundation that the Road Awareness Program (RAP) is able to continue.
The RAP program operates with the funds given to them by the members of the foundation.
Students who attended the 90 minute program get to listen to crash survivors tell their story and they also watch crash videos.
RAP is delivered to schools free of change and inspires students to take responsibility for their decisions and behaviour and gets the students to practice safe driving.
It is because of firefighters like Billy who not only donate their weekly paycheque to the cause but also put their lives on the line that many burn and car accident victims are still with their family and friends today.
Volunteers for the Country Fire Service (CFS) should also be praised for all the work they do.
Without the CFS volunteers and their help within the community fires that have occurred within the Barossa region could have been a lot worse then they were.
With summer less then two months away people are urged to make sure they have a survival plan or to contact their local CFS for one.