Bravery in the face of adversity

 Noluvuyo Mpande
Noluvuyo Mpande

Noluvuyo Mpande, is a determined woman who has moved from the bottom up in the Working on Fire(WOF) project.

A single mother to a son, she grew up in Khayelitsha

She joined the project in 2011 as a fire fighter and worked her way up to become a Health and Safety Administrator.

“My confidence and brave demeanour has opened many doors for me within Working on Fire.

I can say that I am a strong woman who has overcome the many physical and mental challenges that came my way.”

“Through the leadership and training within WOF, it has helped me to live out my passion to promote Health and Safety amongst our teams.”

Noluvuyo stated that she joined the programme during a recruitment drive for many young individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds and those who have lost hope for their future due to the environment they live in.

“WOF has given me and the youth and the women of South Africa a chance to say that we are given the platform to learn and develop ourselves to be strong women and accomplish anything we put our minds to.”

After being inducted into the programme, the firefighters go through extensive training, and are characterized by their fitness, discipline and exceptional work ethic and bravery.

Their employment in the Working on Fire programme is an extension of the Expanded Public Works programme of government.

They have been given a work opportunity to earn a living and to put food on the table.

Working on Fire is a national veld and forest fire fighting resource and it has close to 800 fire fighters based at 32 bases throughout the Western Cape.

Across the country there are currently more than 5 000 participants in the Programme, 94% of whom are youth, 31% are women (the highest level in any comparable fire service in the world).

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