Women in Fire and Emergency New Zealand (WFENZ) is working to establish a support and development network for operational women around the country and has held 17 forums this year, attracting 450 women from across Fire and Emergency.

 Fire and Emergency New Zealand is made up of 13,500 people from all walks of life, cultures, ethnicities, and backgrounds.

Women in Fire and Emergency New Zealand (WFENZ) is working to establish a support and development network for operational women around the country and has held 17 forums this year, attracting 450 women from across Fire and Emergency.

The 12th forum, held at Waitangi in Northland, saw the biggest turnout with around 70 urban, career, volunteer and rural women from Areas 1 and 2 in Region 1 in the Far North attending the event.

Attendees said they felt inspired and supported to tackle the next steps of setting up a local WFENZ network.

The day included a presentation on leadership by Tania McInnes, Far North District Council Deputy Mayor, a session on career opportunities, a series of workshops looking at challenges and barriers for women at Fire and Emergency, and what changes could be made to overcome these. People also shared some of the good things that are happening for operational women in the Far North, in particular the support from local management and the area team.

Kerry Gregory, Fire Region Manager, said “It was fantastic to see so many of our Northland woman at the forum and I felt honoured to be a part of it. Ensuring all our people feel supported and respected for the work they are doing for Fire and Emergency is so important and it is fantastic to see this support growing for our women who can, at times, feel they need to fight for acceptance.”

There is one more WFENZ forum planned before the end of 2017:

  • 16 December, Invercargill

If you would like to get involved with WFENZ or learn more about the forums, contact Ange Munro at Ange.Munro@fireandemergency.nz or Jackie Breen at Jackie.Breen@fireandemergency.nz

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