Jo-Anna

Jo-Anna - PPE

Name: Jo-Anna

Years of service: 9 years 

Roles held: Recruit, Firefighter, Senior Firefighter

Current Rank: Senior Firefighter

Why did you want to become a firefighter?

I had some friends who were firefighters and the more I learnt about the role from them, the more I wanted to do it. I wanted to work in a team environment, be able to help people, have lots of variety in my work and be physically active.

What do you love about your job?

All of the above! We are here to help people and to look after our environment. These are two things I am very passionate about and I feel a lot of satisfaction when we contribute to the community we live in.

The longer I am in the job the more I value the friendships I have developed with my workmates. It is a unique workplace and the bonds we build are strong.  

What advice would you have for someone wanting to apply to become an MFS firefighter?

Check out the MFS website. Research firefighting. Invest time in other community organisations that support our community such as Surf Life Saving, CFS, SES etc. These organisations also rely on good team work, physical fitness and communication to assist the community.

What would you say to someone who’s often wondered but never applied to become an MFS firefighter?

Keep seeking out information on the role of a firefighter. There is plenty of information on the MFS website. If you know someone, or someone you know, knows someone that is a firefighter, follow up that contact. That’s where you will get the best information.

What career development opportunities are available to you as a firefighter?

Our role is so diverse, so you are constantly learning. For example, we respond to fires, hazardous materials incidents that might be dangerous to people or our environment, road accidents, building impacts, vertical rescues, run fire safety education programs.

This means that our training and study is diverse which ensures there is opportunity to continue to improve yourself. Also, there are different departments such as Communications, Community Safety, Training, Fire Cause Investigation, Built Environs, HazMat and Community Education that you can apply to work in.

What are your future aspirations within the MFS?

To continue to enjoy what I do and to make sure I keep improving my ability as a firefighter so that I am ready to assist the community when it is needed most.

I have been lucky enough to work regionally in Port Pirie, Mount Gambier. Currently I work from Headquarters station. Also, my time on day shift meant that I have now worked from all metropolitan fire stations in Adelaide. I hope that I continue to experience the many different parts that make up the MFS here in South Australia.

How does the role fit with your lifestyle?

I find that our roster gives me flexibility to spend time and help out with family, such as baby sitting my niece. Something I have not been able to do in previous careers. Also the flexible roster and requirements to be ‘fit’ for our job as firefighters means I can spend time exercising.  

Have you been able to utilise any ‘flexible work arrangements’ to assist with your family situation?

My partner and I met on a bike ride across America in 2012.  Jess moved from America to be with me here in Australia. The opportunity to work on day shift for 2 years while she settled here in Australia and established her own support network was something we both valued. Now that Jess is settled I am enjoying being on back on shift.

What interests do you have outside of work?

Currently I am right into bike riding and running. My partner and I love to travel, go see live music with friends and hang out with our dog Charlie at our local beach!

What career did you hold before becoming an MFS firefighter?

My previous career was in sport - sports administration/development, coaching and programming.

The MFS is committed to attracting a field of gender and culturally diverse applicants to ensure its workforce increasingly reflects the diversity of the community it serves and protects. MFS has a strong focus on providing a family friendly working environment including flexible working conditions for new parents.

 

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