Heroes do wear costumes — steampunk fans in their techno-Victorian finery offer a helping hand to our yellow-suited firefighting volunteers

Fighting more than fire

by Andy Bryenton

On Thursday, April 4 fire stations all over the Kaipara were open late, inviting new recruits to come and see what volunteering to help their communities is all about. As the season turns, there’s more going on with our firefighting locals as they prepare to tackle the biggest vertical challenge in New Zealand.

Six firefighters from Dargaville will join with others from around the region and around the country to take on the Sky Tower in Auckland on May 18, competing to reach the top of the tallest building in the country while in full kit. By the numbers, that’s more than 25 kilograms of equipment, carried up a massive 1,103 steps, and it’s all to raise money for research into leukaemia and blood cancer.

That’s a good fight, and a helping hand came from the community in the form of our Steampunk enthusiasts, successful hosts of a big day of vintage-themed fun and entertainment a fortnight ago. The team behind the top hats, Victorian lace and brass goggles handed over a very generous cheque to Dargaville’s fire brigade, adding to the donations, which will be raised by the Sky Tower climb.

To help out in your own way, there’s a page to visit online where you can make a donation for the challenge at firefightersclimb.org.nz.

Nevertheless, the bigger picture, here and throughout the Kaipara, is all about finding new recruits to don the yellow helmet and respond to the fire siren when it calls. If you think you have what it takes to help your community in this most important role, please talk to your local fire station chief or one of the crew today.