Rural Fire Service Volunteer and Firecom Officer Carol Wrage and QFES Community Engagement Officer Julianne Webster Scott. Picture: Aden Stokes
Rural Fire Service Volunteer and Firecom Officer Carol Wrage and QFES Community Engagement Officer Julianne Webster Scott. Picture: Aden Stokes

The CQ women making a huge difference behind the scenes

Inspired by her uncle's passion for the fire service, Rockhampton's Carol Wrage followed in his footsteps, despite the workforce being overwhelmingly male dominated when she first signed up as a volunteer.

Ms Wrage, who had worked as a Rural Fire Service volunteer for 20 years and a firecom officer for nine years, said there were very few women in the service when she first started.

"Now we've got women right through the service from volunteers, to paid staff, to auxiliary firefighters, to permanent firefighters," she said.

"We've got training officers, we've got high ranking inspectors as women, and it's really good to see because women have a passion for the fire service as well.

"Women have great skills and abilities.

"Within firecom, women are the majority, and I believe that is because we are great multitaskers and can handle the pressure."

She said the best part about her job in the Rural Fire Service was helping the community and helping people in need working on the triple-0 line.

"We get to speak to people, sometimes during their worst possible times, and guiding them through what information we need to be able to get our crews there to help them in the best way possible," she said.

"You don't realise how much pressure you're under because you just don't stop.

"We're getting calls on the radios, we're taking all the information down, and we're typing as well as talking and making phone calls to get all the assistance that's needed.

"At the end of the day you go 'wow', but you know you've done good for the community and the safety of our firefighters."

With International Women's Day on Monday, Ms Wrage said it was important because it highlighted there were roles available for women in the fire service.

"People don't always see behind the scenes," she said.

"There are a lot of women working behind the scenes that aren't seen out with the fire hoses.

"To get the message out there that there are roles for women in the fire service is absolutely brilliant."

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services community engagement officer Julianne Webster Scott said she had seen a lot of growth in her 15 years working in the industry.

Ms Webster Scott said International Women's Day was important because it highlighted all the work that had been done by previous generations.

She said women who were considering Queensland Fire and Emergency Services as a career, but were worried it was too male dominated, should "go for it".

"It's a wonderful job and one that I never want to leave," she said.

"There's never one day that's the same.

"If you're wanting to join the service, you can actually go to the website and take a test that will tell you what role will fit you best.

"It's just really great to be a part of a wonderful organisation."

The theme for this year's International Women's Day is choose to challenge, with Dress for Success chosen as the charity.