VOLUNTEERING has given Norm Bowen the opportunity to achieve things he never expected.
Mr Bowen has been volunteering with the Country Fire Authority for 50 years and said his work had allowed him to expand his horizons.
He first started with the CFA in Swan Hill when he was 16-years-old because "it was the thing to do" and spent a number of years working in New South Wales.
Mr Bowen then moved to Goornong before taking up a position at Woodvale.
Nowdays, he works at the Bendigo Headquarters Brigade co-ordinating the welfare department and said he had made some life-long friendships.
"The CFA is a family," he said.
"You meet some great people and make some great friends.
"It is a magnificent organisation.
"I hope to continue there for a while to come."
Mr Bowen said he gets satisfaction out of helping people and encouraged the community to get involved.
"If there are things you want to do there will be an opportunity to do it," he said.
"It has helped me achieve great things."