National Volunteer Week: Far North Freefall

Last updated 21 May 2024

  1. Blog
  2. DZ Days
  3. QLD
  4. Skydiving Stories
  5. State

With National Volunteer Week upon us, we would like to recognise and thank our volunteers, past and present, whose contributions have made our sport what it is today. In the spotlight today is the Far North Freefall community, who recently got together to clean up the damage and absolute mess left behind by the north Queensland flash flooding.

National Volunteer Week

National Volunteer Week is Australia’s largest annual celebration of volunteering, providing an opportunity to highlight the important role of volunteers in our community, and inviting people not currently volunteering to give it a go.
National Volunteer Week 2024 Logo
Since the APF was established, it has relied heavily upon volunteers. So much has changed over the years, but the need for helping hands has not changed one bit. If we did not have the small army of volunteers that we do, the sport as we know it would cease to exist in this country. So much work is shouldered by those who seek no recognition and receive no payment. By law, the APF Board must be volunteers, with all seven Area Councils relying on volunteers. There are volunteers serving on APF Committees, and, of course, we have volunteers helping out around the drop zones. They are always willing to lend a helping hand, asking nothing for themselves, but doing what they do for the love of the sport.

This week is a time to recognise and thank our volunteers, past and present, whose contributions have made our sport what it is today.

Volunteer Spotlight: Far North Freefall

In today's spotlight is the community at Far North Freefall (FNFF).

FNFF Display 

FNFF is a not-for-profit skydiving club in Far North Queensland, run completely by volunteer members. The club has experienced dramatic changes over the last few years, going from a humble fun jumping drop zone, to a full training operation, offering student training and a calendar of highly sought-after events. With the aim of keeping skydiving as affordable as possible, the volunteers and club committee work hard behind-the-scenes to make this happen, creating an amazing community of skydivers at FNFF as a result.  

FNFF by Ewan Cowie

FNFF is located in Tully, which is arguably the wettest town in Australia, so the community here is accustomed to a spot of rain. But being at the mercy of the tropical rainforest climate can indeed cause some significant issues.

If we wind the clocks back a few months to late-February 2024, the Tully residents were just getting back on their feet after the Tropical Cyclone Jasper in December, when even more flash flooding took the town by surprise. If the the wettest tropical cyclone in Australian history wasn't enough, the February flooding saw over 400 millimetres of rainfall from Friday night into Saturday morning. This clearly caused a lot of damage to local businesses, homes and highways, and left the FNFF drop zone in an absolute flooded mess.

Tully DZ Flooding FNFF

Cue the volunteers...

 Across two days, the FNFF community got together for a bigger than expected 2024 spring clean.

The first day was spent working through all the damaged gear and filling a skip with anything the dirty flood water had touched. Damaged furniture and any items stored under the seating or on the floor were thrown out. Thankfully all prized skydiving possessions were safely stored before the flooding.

FNFF Clean Up

The second day saw FNFF member, Steve Garrard, bring his company's industrial cleaning equipment up from Townsville to help out. His expertise and industrial equipment were instrumental in tackling the extensive clean-up required both outside and inside the drop zone building.

FNFF Clean Up

"Everyone smashed it out with lots of scrubbing, squeegee action, mopping, whipper snippering, pruning, tree lobbing, disinfecting and shuffling of furniture out of buildings and back into buildings!"

Together the community members got the drop zone back into action in an incredible two-day timeframe. The weather on the second day brought the crew a reward, with work breaks and good weather allowing three loads of skydiving to take place!

FNFF Angle by Cam Puttee

Hats off to everyone involved at FNFF for their stellar efforts and teamwork, for the benefit of their community and skydiving in Far North Queensland.

If you would like to submit an article, or have a topic request for the APF Blog, please email

[Photo Sources: Cameron Puttee, Ewan Cowie, Far North Freefall]