“We can’t say thank you enough”

Emergency Services

“We can’t say thank you enough”

Ray and Bev were rescued from floodwaters in the Victorian town of Rochester. At the Bendigo Relief Centre, Red Cross was there to meet them.

Ray and Bev at the Bendigo Relief Centre with Red Cross emergency services team members Sheryl Hastings and Greg Ralton. Photo: Alex Coppel
“It hurts when you talk about what you people do,” says Ray. ”It’s amazing and lets you know there are other good people in the world.”

Last October, Ray and his wife, Bev, should have been celebrating their 61st wedding anniversary. Instead, they were being rescued after floods swept through their home in the small rural Victorian town of Rochester.

“It was terrible, we were trying to get out of the house, and I slipped,” says Bev. “All of a sudden, the water was up to my knee, so we climbed up on top of the bed and then we knew it was too late.

“State Emergency Services and others helped us get into a boat, and they lifted us onto the trailer and took us through to the safe area. We’re one of the lucky ones. Red Cross [met us], reassuring, beautiful people.”

Rescuers took the couple to the Bendigo Relief Centre, where Red Cross emergency response teams supported hundreds of people, and their pets, evacuated in the floods.

Sheryl Hastings, from our Emergency Services team, says people at the relief centre were feeling anxious. “People who have lost everything, everything’s been flooded. We’ve been spending time with people, listening to them tell their very personal stories if they wished, and linking them with other local and government services."

"When people have been through a disaster, sitting with them, listening, and letting them know you hear and understand them, can make a real difference in their lives," Sheryl says.

For Ray and Bev, that support meant everything. “We can’t say thank you enough,” says Ray.

Ray and Bev talk about their experience at the Bendigo Relief Centre.

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