A VOLUNTEER firefighter has expressed thanks ahead of a national day of thanks for firefighters on Friday.
Bendigo Fire Brigade secretary George Flack said he would like to offer his thanks to the community for its efforts in recognising the work performed by firefighters through National Red Balloon Day.
"From a recognition point of view any volunteer deserves it and not just volunteer firefighters but across the broad spectrum of emergency service workers," he said.
"Everyone of those put in, particularly when you look back at Black Saturday years ago, and you can understand (how important their jobs are).
"It's a fantastic initiative that has grown."
Mr Flack was among crews who were deployed to Whittlesea shortly after Black Saturday and said firefighters did a great job.
"Personally we get out of it the satisfaction that we are serving our communities," he said.
"I think every (firefighter) is appreciative of the recognition."
Bendigo woman Jody Hardiman was the driving force behind National Red Balloon Day - a campaign started to thank firefighters.
An official event will take place in Bendigo's Civic Gardens today from 11am to 3pm.
Volunteer Fire Brigades Victoria executive officer Lieutenant Adam Barnett said he would like to thank everyone involved in National Red Balloon Day.
"We thank the organisers for their hard work, the schools and businesses that have shown such enthusiasm, the families who have put red balloons on their front gates and everyone who has run a sausage sizzle or other fundraiser," he said.
"Like you, CFA volunteers come from the community and we do what we do for the people around us, so this recognition from our own communities is both humbling and a great encouragement."
Lieutenant Barnett said the national campaign was a reminder for residents to think about what they could do to reduce the risk of fire.
"Summer is not yet over, and every red balloon is a reminder that by making a plan of action for your family and preparing your property, you can contribute to your own safety," he said.