New facility officially opens at VICSES Cobram Unit

New facility officially opens at VICSES Cobram Unit

15/09/2023, 9:00 AM

VICSES Cobram Unit members with VICSES CEO Stephen Griffin, and Minister for Emergency Services, Jaclyn Symes, 15 September 2023 (photo credit: VICSES)

A big congratulations to our VICSES Cobram Unit volunteers, following the official opening of their brand-new facility on Cobram-Koonoomoo Road today.

The Cobram Unit, which services the Local Government Area of Moira, has previously operated out of Tocumwal in New South Wales for the past 15 years, while also utilising temporary facilities across Cobram.

With construction completed in June 2023, the facility was officially made operational in July 2023 and aims to provide a dedicated facility for VICSES members on the Victorian side of the border, enabling better coordination and response to emergencies.

Minister for Emergency Services and Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes MP was on hand today alongside VICSES CEO Stephen Griffin, Unit Controller Wendy Tucknott and a number of other guests to unveil the plaque and officially open the facility.

The Cobram Unit currently has 23 active members; however, with the new facility they will be looking to expand their membership base and operational capabilities, with the addition of four motorbays, a devoted office space, dedicated communications room and a large meeting room which can also be used for training purposes.

This means that volunteers can fit more vehicles in the motor bay, train members more easily, facilitate regional training and more importantly, encourage future members to join the service with the appeal of a brand-new facility.

"Big, bright, and ready to be filled with orange." Courtney Burke reports on new unit facility opening at Cobram, for WIN News Shepparton on 15 September 2023

The delivery of the new unit is a huge boost to the VICSES Cobram catchment area, which includes parts of Hume region significantly affected by severe storms and flooding in the past 12-months.

Established in 1975, the unit’s volunteers have received more than 440 requests for assistance over the past five years, including responding to flood incidents, road rescues, building damage, fallen trees and assisting other emergency services.

The new facility located on Cobram-Koonoomoo Road reflects VICSES' commitment and dedication to the local community and will enable an expansion of local services, supporting the retention and recruitment of new volunteers.

This build is part of recent investment into facilities infrastructure for VICSES volunteers, made by the State Government with the build coordinated by the Emergency Services Infrastructure Authority (ESIA).

Quotes attributable to VICSES Chief Executive Officer Stephen Griffin:

“This new, fit for purpose, smart and modern facility is befitting of a professional emergency service. Not only will it better equip our existing volunteers to perform their role, but will provide additional space for training, and help support the retention of current volunteers and recruitment of new ones.”

“Where we've seen an investment in VICSES facilities, we've seen a boost in volunteer numbers. Given our volunteers aren’t paid to have the appropriate facilities and equipment to train and manage responses from both attracts and retains community members.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Emergency Services Jaclyn Symes:

“VICSES Cobram volunteers now have the fit-for-purpose facility they need and deserve, allowing them to carry out their pivotal role in keeping the community safe.”

“We’re delighted to open the new VICSES Cobram Unit and deliver a permanent base for our members in Victoria, where they belong.”

“VICSES volunteers play an incredibly important role in keeping Victorians safe, and this new facility represents the Victorian Government's commitment to supporting our valued emergency services.”


VICSES Cobram Unit's new facility, 15 September 2023 (photo credit: VICSES)