Aligning our awards

When the UFBA and FRFANZ merged in 2020 we agreed to transition towards one set of service awards for all members.

Graeme McIntyre, Deputy Principal Rural Fire Officer and FRFANZ Awards Coordinator, and Ric Carlyon, LHM and Chair of the UFBA’s Service and Ceremonial Committee have established a process that has been approved by both associations.

This, we believe, will continue to celebrate both sets of awards during the transition process which will be completed by 2045.

Choosing FRFANZ or UFBA awards

FRFANZ members can choose to wear:

  • FRFANZ awards only (for 25 years)
  • UFBA awards only (there will be a cost for replacement medals/bars)
  • Their existing FRFANZ awards together with new UFBA awards.

New brigade members

If you’ve joined a rural fire brigade since the merger, you’ll receive UFBA awards, starting with the 3-Year Certificate.

Different year-values

The two sets of awards have different year-values so we’ve created a one-year FRFANZ bar (silver and gold) so you can easily change to the UFBA awards. (The table below shows how you can align your awards.)

 You can use one or two of these bars or take off one of your existing FRFANZ bars to align the years of service.

To order the 1-year bars (free), switch to UFBA awards or order FRFANZ medals and bars contact the Service Honours team: servicehonours@ufba.org.nz.

You can order awards at any time, even if the person hasn’t yet completed the service.

Haven’t issued service honours before?

We know that some brigades haven’t issued service honours before – we’re here to help! Get in touch with the Service Honours team if you’ve got any questions or don’t know who’s due to receive an award. We can send service records for individuals or the whole brigade.

If your brigade records are incomplete, we do have a process to provide evidence of a member’s service which includes filling out statutory declaration forms.

How to align FRFANZ and UFBA awards

Individual’s Present Service




1 year’s service

no award

2 year’s service

no award

3 years’ service

FRFANZ medal or UFBA Certificate

4 years’ service

no award

5 years’ service

UFBA Medal, with a silver UFBA bar every two years after,
                                or two x 1-year FRFANZ bars, with a silver UFBA bar every two years after

6 years’ service

FRFANZ Medal and 1 x 3-year bar

7 years’ service

FRFANZ 1 x 1-year bars = 7 years 

8 years’ service

next bar after 1 year  =  9 years  

11 years’ service

next bar after 2 years = 13 years 

14 years’ service

next bar after 1 year   = 15 years  

17 years’ service

next bar after 2 years = 19 years  

20 years’ service

next bar 1 year = 21 years  

23 years’ service

next medal after 2 years = 25 years