Strengthening rural firefighters’ skills

  Posted on 6th July 2017 by Loralee Hyde in UFBA News

The 12th UFBA Leadership and Governance Workshop took place in Wellington from 22-24 June bringing the total number of graduates to 185 personnel around the country.

This workshop was specially designed for our rural colleagues to offer them this valued experience as we all meet the challenges of the new Fire and Emergency New Zealand environment.

2017 rural Leadership and Governance workshop

Interest in this workshop was high with a strong response from UFBA and FRFANZ members and two rural fire forces that are not members of either organisation.

Participants were Aaron Cassie (Bottle Lake), Chase Cook (Tamatea), Colin Robson (Wellington), Howard Cole (Maramarua), Jason Sarich (Upper Hutt), Jim Gardner (Waikuku Beach), Josh Dobson (Manawatu), Kevin Ihaka (FRFANZ), Louvain Ander (Bottle Lake), Mario Lunjevich (Darfield), Matt Hickmott-Balks (Kohi), Nicholas West (Manawatu), Owen Taumua (Heretaunga), Simon Byrnes (Levin), Tim Dinneen (Puketitiri) and Tom Thomson (Motunau).

“I learnt a lot at the workshop. It was well organised and the tutors were well prepared and delivered in an easy way to learn. I now have skills to improve my leadership that will benefit my brigade and community. Thank you UFBA for the opportunity. I really appreciate it. I highly recommend it.”
Owen Taumua, Heretaunga

Key UFBA strategy

Chief Executive Officer George Verry says promoting and providing leadership and governance development for members is a key strategy of the UFBA/FRFANZ.

“Strengthening leadership and governance skills leads to more successful operation of brigades and rural fire forces,” George says.

“Leadership is a quality that every firefighter can demonstrate both in their community and in their personal life.

“The UFBA Leadership and Governance Workshop is the ideal course to enhance the skills of our firefighters—which will contribute to both their personal growth and the operation of their brigades.”

Workshop graduates are providing an excellent consultancy resource for UFBA and FRFANZ advocacy processes. George says many graduates have made themselves available to help out with member consultation during the transition to Fire and Emergency New Zealand.

“Their leadership and guidance will continue to be a major factor in achieving a great response from our members when we gather feedback over the next three years of the integration phase of the new organisation.”

Next workshops

A UFBA Leadership and Governance Workshop for urban and rural firefighters will take place from 14-16 September.

This workshop is now oversubscribed, however, George says the UFBA is in the process of planning the workshop programme for 2018.

“We look forward to continuing to strengthen the skills of our firefighters through this valuable learning opportunity.”

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