Australian Firefighters Bless Us Again With Their 2023 Charity Calendar (24 Pics) Interview
The legendary Australian Firefighters Calendar is celebrating its 30-year anniversary in 2023, and this year’s photos are as impressive as ever. Every year, members of the fire service pose for eye-catching pictures to support a wide range of charities… and make the jaws of people around the entire globe drop with their hard-earned physiques, as a bonus. To date, the calendar has raised over 3.2 million dollars for charities!
Scroll down, upvote your fave pics, and be sure to share your thoughts in the comments. And remember, buying any one of the 2023 calendar editions supports various charitable projects and also helps animals in need, just like every year. (It’s also an awesome Christmas gift, wink, wink, nudge, nudge.) It is literally the world’s most popular calendar, and its reputation is well-deserved.
David Rogers, the Director of the project, was kind enough to share his thoughts with Bored Panda about the major anniversary and what the future holds, and gave us some advice to get as fit as the firefighters featured in the various editions of the calendar. Check out the full interview below.
Do we have any Firefighter Pandas in the house today? We’d love to learn more about your job, so don’t be shy, share your experiences and what made you want to join the fire service in the first place.
Firefighters are among the top most trusted professions in Australia and abroad. And it’s no wonder—they put their own health and safety at risk to save lives. And in their spare time, some of them give back and support charitable projects. One way they do this is by releasing the Australian Firefighters Calendar every single year.
Funds from calendar sales over the past 30 years have supported medical research into sourcing better methods to treat severe burns in children. What’s more, the project has a proud history of supporting animal refuges and Australian Wildlife. This will continue into the future.
David, the Director of the calendar project, shared with Bored Panda that 30 years is a very long time. It’s only when you stop and think that you realize just how long of a period it really is. Many of the firefighters who’d posed in the first photos are now enjoying retirement.
“The one thing that we have noticed is the guys that appeared in the first calendars are now retired from the fire service and in their late 50s and early 60s. It really gives you a sense of how long this calendar has been around for,” David told us.
According to the Director, the project will hold the same course in the future. “We plan on staying true to what our fans like so much about the calendars, so no major changes in the calendar look,” he said.
However, there will be “big changes” in the time that the Aussie firefighters spend overseas. “We plan to go to Europe, Asia, and back to the US next year. Our hope is we can travel to meet our fans and promote the messages that are important to the calendar,” David shared some of the plans they have. They have fans pretty much in every country, and they want to visit them all.
Bored Panda wanted to get to grips with how much time and effort it takes to look as good as the firefighters in the photos. David told us that there really aren’t any shortcuts: it all comes down to discipline, consistency, and dedication.
“To be calendar fit takes months of diet and exercise. The firefighters really need to get into the best possible shape they can for the calendar photo shoot, because to get a photo in the calendar is extremely competitive,” he explained.
“The guys like to say, “More crunches, less lunches.” There are no shortcuts to being fit, you need to do the work.” (Yours truly might have taken that to heart and will be focusing more on crunches during lunchtime.)
Six of the calendar firefighters were invited to Los Angeles to appear on the Kelly Clarkson Show in October, to celebrate the 30-year anniversary. It’s the biggest talk show in the US. What’s more, the firefighters have also appeared on ACCESS Hollywood, Entertainment Tonight, and Good Morning LA.
After 3 years of not being able to travel due to lockdowns and restrictions, everyone was eager to visit the States again.
The charitable project has a 2023 calendar for everyone’s tastes, from the 30-year anniversary denim edition to the classic, dog, cat, horse, and mixed animal versions. All of these are intrinsically tied to the fire service’s desire to help others. For instance, the dog calendar features the firefighters with rescue dogs from Safe Haven Animal Rescue and All Breeds Canine rescue.
Meanwhile, the horse calendar features therapy horses from Healing Hooves. And all of this year’s cats were rescues from Best Friends Felines. The firefighters hope to inspire people to adopt a pet from one of these organizations.
The most popular edition of the calendar is always the mixed animal one. Created 5 years ago, the edition features a koala on the cover every single time, and it’s the photo that all of the firefighters want to be featured in.
The Australian Firefighters Calendar will continue to support US charities for the second year in a row. They’re supporting Rescue Rebuild, a shelter renovation program of Greater Good Charities, which recruits volunteers to renovate animal shelters, domestic violence shelters, veterans housing, and homeless shelters. Rescue Rebuild has completed 175 renovations that have helped over 3.2k people and over 720k pets.
Meanwhile, among the Australian charities and organizations that the calendar supports are the Council of Australian Volunteer Fire Associations, the Kids With Cancer Foundation, the Byron Bay Wildlife Hospital, Australian Seabird Rescue, Fauna Rescue of SA, Healing Hooves, Native Animal Rescue, Wildcare Inc, Safe Haven Animal Rescue, Best Friends Felines, and All Breed Canine Rescue Inc.
The firefighters featured in the calendar are extremely dutiful and humble. They serve as positive role models for Australians far and near. Matt Ross, a Fire Rescue Victoria firefighter, said: “Although the selection process for the fire service was long and extremely competitive, it was well worth the effort. In the fire service, I have found a more community-focused and fulfilling career. Due to the serious nature of firefighting, I found it necessary to increase my overall fitness level to keep up with the rigors of the job.”
Meanwhile, Brenden Purvis, a Royal Australian Airforce firefighter, said: “Serving in the Rural Fire Brigade with my community members inspired me to serve my country further. When I was old enough, I enlisted with the Royal Australian Air Force. Before I left for my first deployment overseas, I was also able to convince my Mum to get involved in the Wamuran Rural Fire Brigade organization too. Mum is still a serving member of the Rural Fire Brigade, far exceeding the number of years I was there. Mum’s involvement in serving our community fills me with immense pride.”
What do you think of this year's photos, dear Pandas? How long have you been a fan of the Australian Firefighters Calendar? Do you support any animal charities in your spare time? We'd love to hear your thoughts, so don't be shy and tell us what you think in the comments.
Here's how some internet users reacted when they saw this year's calendar pics
Be sure to watch this exclusive video showing some behind-the-scenes footage from these adorable animal photo shoots