New chief keen to improve emergency care in regions

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New St John Ambulance North West regional manager Travis Gowland.
Camera IconNew St John Ambulance North West regional manager Travis Gowland. Credit: Jakeb Waddell

A country man’s desire to lead positive change in regional WA has led to him taking on the top job at a critical emergency service that covers the State’s entire north.

Travis Gowland was recently appointed the new St John Ambulance North West regional manager and believes he is up for the challenge of overseeing the entire Kimberley and Pilbara regions.

Having grown up and lived in a number of remote areas around the State, Mr Gowland said it was very clear to him how reliant these areas were on a well-managed emergency response team.

He said there were a number of obstacles in the regions that he would have to get his head around.

“There is a significant reliance on volunteers in regions like the Kimberley and Pilbara because of the huge area we cover,” he said.

“The problem there is that the towns and communities are often so transient, meaning attracting and retaining volunteers can be difficult.

“That is probably the biggest issue or challenge for me.

“This job will be a big change for me and there certainly are these tough things to tackle but I am very excited to be part of an organisation that does really positive things for communities.” Mr Gowland said he was confident he would continue the solid relationship already established with other emergency services in the regions.

“We have to work closely with organisations like the Royal Flying Doctor Service, Department of Fire and Emergency Services and WA Police,” he said.

“It is important to maintain this close connection in remote areas as we are consistently having to collaborate during rescues and call-outs.” Mr Gowland worked in the resources industry for the past two years before moving north with his wife and three children.

He will be based in Broome but will frequently travel to other areas in the North West.

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