The Keevers of Bligh Park have been volunteering at St John Ambulance Hawkesbury for 13 years

A family that saves together, stays together: that's the truth for the Keevers of Bligh Park, with 29-year-old Leanne, her father John and her mother Dianne all having volunteered for St John Ambulance Hawkesbury Division for 13 years.

The not-for-profit organisation provides first aid training, products, and first aid services at events - the biggest of which on the local division's calendar is the Hawkesbury Show.

Based in Clarendon, the local branch also attends other Hawkesbury Showground events including showjumping and equestrian shows, the weekend Lions Markets and annual swap meets, and also travels further afield to attend Anzac Day and other memorial days in the region, up to Colo Heights for 4WD events, and even to St Albans for the Folk Festival.

When Leanne - now a registered nurse and paramedic - decided 13 years ago that she wanted to volunteer for St John Ambulance, her parents "came along as cheerleaders" and decided to join up themselves.

Volunteering wasn't a new thing for the Keevers, with John and Dianne already giving-up their time for the Rural Fire Service catering team and Hawkesbury Meals on Wheels.

"With St John you need to do at least 60 hours per year, but we expend that easily with meetings, preparation and events. My dad is the duty officer [of St Johns Ambulance Hawkesbury] and he does 500-plus hours a year," Leanne said.

She said the best thing about volunteering with St John was "being part of the community".

"I've grown up with volunteering, I used to help mum with Meals on Wheels, and now I get to be part of all the events happening in the Hawkesbury, meeting local members of parliament, seeing people at the same events time and again, and getting to know people from community groups - just being a part of where I come from and where I live," she said.

The St John Hawkesbury volunteers meet every Wednesday night at Clarendon to talk over their duties for the coming weekend, to organise who's available, brush up on their training, go through their equipment and make sure they're ready for their upcoming jobs.

"We're always very excited getting prepared for the Hawkesbury Show, setting up the hall, getting maps ready, talking to the show committee, organising ambulances - sometimes we get members from other divisions to help us as well," Leanne said.

While the St John team can provide a lot of the same emergency care as NSW Ambulances, Leanne said their role at the Hawkesbury Show was also one of community liaison.

"We're glad that the community seems happy to approach us, ask us where the toilets are, do we have any sunscreen, help with directions," she said.

"There's a mixed group of skills on each duty. We can help people with a referral, let them know whether or not they should see a doctor, whether they're well enough to stay at an event. We have a lot of the same equipment that paramedics have, ECGs and drugs - it's like being a paramedic for the community and volunteering."

She said while St John was best-known for providing first aid, they also provide first aid training to whoever walks through their tent while they're set-up at events.

"St John does first aid courses and sells kits, so if anyone hasn't done a first aid course for a while, or has never done one, we can help give you the confidence for if you're ever the first person on the scene," Leanne said.

When she's not volunteering with St John Ambulance Hawkesbury, Leanne is employed as a neonatal intensive care unit nurse at Westmead Children's Hospital, and is also a qualified paramedic at NSW Ambulance Blacktown Station.

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