Bundaberg Region couple Nygerie Molloy and Bob Barkle won five gold medals at the NSW Police and Emergency Services Games in October.
Being a part of the local State Emergency Services volunteer group is a great way to serve your community, learn new skills and to bond with like-minded people.
Nygerie and Bob have also found an enjoyable way to participate in emergency services activities outside the normal SES training routines.
The couple, members of the Gin Gin SES, have been regulars at the biennial Australasian Police and Emergency Services Games and have attended, with considerable success, events held in 2016 and 2018.
“A few years ago, we found a few brief details about the 2016 Games through an SES publication and decided it might be fun to participate,” said Nygerie.
“The Games were to be held on the Sunshine Coast and Bob was keen because there was a fishing competition being held on Bjelke-Petersen Dam.
“I told him that if he expected me to be on the water with him at some ungodly hour, he could also participate in the darts with me in both singles and mixed doubles.”
Bob didn’t fare so well in the fishing, while against all the odds Nygerie ended up taking a silver medal in the women’s division.
However, in the darts competition the duo showed uncanny form and managed a gold apiece in the singles and the mixed doubles.
“I reckon we only had about two week’s practice before we attended the Games,” said Bob.
“We brought a set of darts each and a dart board from a local sports shop and set it up on a brick wall at home. I can tell you those bricks initially copped a hiding,” laughed Bob.
“In 2018 we thought we should defend our titles and made the trip to Mandurah which about an hour south of Perth.
“It was an expensive proposition to get there for the eight days of competition, but we took jobs delivering unaddressed mail (I call it junk mail,” said Bob) and raised the funds we needed to get ourselves there. We still do that job to raise our travel money,” said Nygerie.
Nygerie was again successful taking gold in the singles, gold in the pairs with a female friend and bronze with Bob in the mixed doubles.
“We really enjoy the opportunity to compete in these Games which do attract a broad cross section of emergency services personnel from around the world. There were six countries represented at Mandurah,” said Bob.
While preparing to head to Wollongong for the 2020 Games, Bob and Nygerie happened to notice the 2019 New South Wales Police and Emergency Services Games were being held in late October at that location and featured 43 sports.
The couple gained permission to compete and really cleaned up the opposition coming home with seven medals including five gold medals.
“It was great to use the facilities at Wollongong as it gave us a bit of an insight for the Australasian Games to be held there next year.”
“In the meantime, we will keep delivering those shopping catalogues to help fund our trips. If you see us, give us a wave or a thumbs up as we pop those items into your letterbox. It’s for a great cause!” said Bob.
Mayor Jack Dempsey congratulated Bob and Nygerie on their success and said he hoped more emergency services personnel would look to compete in similar events.
“It provides another dimension to service with units like the SES and is obviously a great way to build and cement friendships.”