Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock for the last month, you’d be aware that large areas of Australia have been destroyed by bushfire. New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Victoria have had lives lost and homes destroyed.

Our paid and voluntary Emergency Services officers alike are affected by scenes where life and property are lost. The effects vary from the immediate – exhaustion, witnessing devastation and loss – through to the longer term – lost income due to long weeks and months fighting fires, potentially even lost jobs, and the cost to volunteers’ families and friends too.

Telstra has a small offer to help, and while it is small, it’s definitely a great step for the company to take. Telstra is offering to cover the mobile bills for volunteer firefighters for the months of December 2019 and January 2020, and that’s going to make a big difference.

It’s one less expense to worry about when fighting fires in a voluntary capacity, and if that makes the difference between firefighters being able to stay in touch with family and not, or being able to pay for another bill instead of a mobile bill, then that’s going to be welcome.

Telstra CEO Andrew Penn acknowledged the importance of staying in touch, especially when facing overwhelming circumstances like the bushfires ravaging the Australian coastline:

We understand how important it is to reach out to friends and family during times of crisis, and we want to do all we can to help. So in addition to the assistance packages that we always make available for our customers during emergencies, we wanted to also ensure that Australia’s volunteer firefighters are supported as well.

We hope this will help ease some of the burden, particularly as many of these firefighters are defending their own communities.

Registering for services

Volunteers can contact Telstra on 132 203 to register for the free Telstra services package over December and January.

This offer is a further step forward from the assistance packages being offered to the communities who have lost so much. If you’re in one of these communities, check for information to your local area or call 132 203 to register:

If you know a volunteer firefighter or someone who has been affected, please get in touch with them and let them know about the offer from Telstra.