Becoming a Volunteer
What does it take?
You will need to be:
• At least 17 years of age (unless joining as a junior or cadet member)
• Of good character
• Available to regularly attend brigade meetings and training
• Available to attend emergency incidents (if an active member)
• Medically and physically fit to undertake the work volunteers are given
• Able to become competent in the tasks volunteers are trained to perform
• Capable of working and fitting in with other volunteers
Juniors and Cadet members
The Tasmania Fire Service also welcomes and appreciates young people in the community getting involved in their local brigade. Many brigades across Tasmania have junior members (10-14 years) and cadet members (15-17 years), who participate in well supervised and exciting training activities.
If you're young and one day you would like to become a volunteer or career firefighter, there's no better way to start than joining up as junior or cadet member. Why not contact your local brigade and find out if they have a junior and cadet program? If they have, you will need to get your parent's consent in order to join.
What's the process?
There are basically three stages in the process of becoming a volunteer:
Who should I contact?
The first thing you should do is contact your local brigade directly or through the TFS Regional Office in your part of the State. Contact details are provided in Making Contact. When you make contact with the brigade the brigade chief will normally invite you along to visit the brigade on one of its training nights.
What can I expect when I first visit a brigade?
On your first visit you will go through an Introduction where you are introduced to the members and given a tour of the station. The brigade chief or another officer will then talk to you about the brigade, why you're interested in joining, and what sort of things you could be expected to do and learn over the next few months.
How do I apply for membership?
If you decide after the first night to continue you will be asked to fill in an application form and provide a good character check from your local Police Station. You may also be asked to have a medical check carried out with your doctor if you wish to be an active firefighter in a brigade that uses breathing apparatus.
These documents and your discussion with the brigade members will form the basis of your application for membership, and subject to vacancies and you being successful in your application and probation, will form the basis of full membership at a later date.
Will I be on probation?
Everyone who becomes a member of a brigade serves a probation period of at least three months, unless decided otherwise by the Brigade Chief.
Probation is a trial period of learning and development, when you and the brigade members have an opportunity to get to know each other. This is so the brigade can find out if you will be suited to your role and the brigade. Also it gives you an opportunity to learn about the role and decide if you still really want to go ahead with becoming a volunteer.
How will I be selected?
Successful members will be selected by the Brigade Chief, in consultation with the current membership. Your suitability will be assessed on the criteria listed below:-
• Your efforts in turning up and participating in brigade activities.
• The way you fit in with other members.
• Satisfactory completion of basic training.
• Your behaviour in upholding the values and reputation of the brigade and the Tasmania Fire Service.