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Meet Ryan Jacobsen - Westfield Local Heroes 2021

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Meet Ryan Jacobsen - Westfield Local Heroes 2021

Leading care in emergencies

St John Ambulance Australia (Victoria) Inc
Passionate. Dedicated. Selfless

Ryan Jacobsen is the volunteer State Emergency Management Manager St John Ambulance Australia and gave his all to ensure the service rose to the challenge during the twin crises of the bushfire disaster in 2019-20 and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ryan is a paramedic and has been volunteering with the charity since he was 15, attending events and providing first aid.

During the bushfires, he led the efficient and safe deployment of 124 volunteers who provided emergency first aid and psychological support to firefighters and the community. At one stage, the team worked for nearly 40 days without respite.

The charity was quick to roll out new initiatives during the pandemic. These included transporting vulnerable people to be tested for the virus, assisting with testing over 6000 people in coronavirus hotspots around Victoria and setting up an urgent care centre at two public housing blocks when they were locked down.

Ryan is thrilled to be nominated as a Westfield Local Hero. “December 2019 to late 2020 was a period of extreme stress on myself and my personal life. To have my efforts recognised in this way drives me to continue my volunteering and to drive improvements in the way we deliver our service to maximise our impact,” he says.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. St John Ambulance Australia (Victoria) will use its funds to train volunteers for future leadership roles in the service.

For further information on the Westfield Local Heroes program, click here