Working on Fire

Working on Fire manages an Integrated Fire Management Programme which includes fire management planning, detection, prevention, suppression, dispatch and coordination and community fire awareness activities.

Working on Fire

Working on Fire is an Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) aimed at providing work opportunities to young men and women. The Programme resides under, and is funded by, the Department of Environmental Affairs.

Participants are recruited from marginalised communities and trained in fire awareness and education, fire prevention and fire suppression skills. In addition, they are also trained in skills such as first aid, carpentry, cooking, health and safety and communications.

5000 Participants

Working on Fire recruits and trains young men and women from across South Africa, with a strong focus on marginalized communities and people with disabilities. There are currently more than 5000 participants in the Programme, 94% of whom are youth, 31% are women (the highest level in any comparable fire service in the world) and 3% disabled.

WOF Partnerships

Working on Fire (WOF) is a South African, government-funded, multi-partner organisation. The Department of Forestry, Fisheries and Environment (DFFE) provides the main funding and structure for the programme and forms an integral part of the South African Government’s future planning for the custodianship of South Africa’s natural environment.

Social Development

Working on Fire promotes capacity building among participants and runs various programmes, which help to develop the social cohesion of these participants. Empowering participants to make informed decisions, and also helping them with financial and social related problems, makes up a vital part of the programme’s initiatives.

Working On Fire History

The Kishugu Group (formarly known as the FFA Group of Companies) was awarded a tender by National Government in 2003 to implement an aerial and ground resource plan for fighting veld fires.

This was the first of its kind in South Africa and it took much research, both locally and internationally, to come up with a strategy which could be practically applied in the unique South African landscape. The result was – Working on Fire, officially launched in September 2003.

The Programme was initially funded by the government and the commercial forestry sector. Embedded in the Expanded Public Works Programme, the project combined sound land management principles, and best practice wildland firefighting expertise, with the need to create jobs and develop skills.

Given the impact of annual fires across the countryside and in the urban areas, there was a need for an agency that could train a firefighting hand-crew, and could base these teams locally but deployed nationally when necessary. The overall strategy was to apply the principles of integrated fire management, in order to reduce the frequency and impact of uncontrolled veld fires.

Since 2003, the Kishugu Group has been re-awarded the Project WP9191 tender and the project has grown by 30% per annum. In 2013, Working on Fire (Pty) Ltd, a subsidiary company within the Kishugu Group, was awarded the seven year contract to implement the Working on Fire programme on behalf of the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and Environmental (DFFE).

Working on Fire Programme South Africa history
WoF NEWS-EC ready for fire season - 2015 June

Functions and Portfolios

Working on Fire Executive Committee (EXCO)

It is the structure through which the MD is able to obtain input in managing the company and keeping the EXCO members to account for their specific portfolios. The EXCO Members are hence responsible for providing guidance on the overall direction and management of the company and providing the strategic guidance and management of their portfolios.

EXCO Responsibilities

The Executive Committee shall be specifically responsible for:

1. Adopting the annual operating plans and annual budget of the company. 2. Providing Strategic Direction on the day to day business and affairs of the Company. Specifically: The development, review and monitoring of the implementation of policies of the Company; Establishing best management practices and functional standards; The adoption of implementation strategies of the Company; Prioritising and allocating the Company’s capital, technical and human resources. 3. Providing input to the Senior management appointments in Working on Fire and reviewing the performance management of and incentivising WOF personnel. 4. Maintaining a group-wide system of internal control to manage all group risks associated with WOF’s operations are effectively managed in line with the DEA contract and the Ministerial Determination. 5. Ensure that the policies and practices of Working on Fire are complaint with all legal and regulatory prescripts. 6. Make recommendations, request for action and table reports to the Board relating to matters beyond the scope of its authority. 7. The Executive is authorised to form sub-committees to assist it in the execution of its duties.
Trevor Abrahams

Managing Director – Responsible for the overall leadership and management of the company.

Megon Norman

Deputy Managing Director: Responsible for strategic leadership and management of the Audit, Quality Assurance, Risk, Monitoring and Evaluation, Compliance Reporting, and liaison with DFFE.

Shane Christian

Executive: Operations – Responsible for operations aspects within WOF: Programmes (WOF, HAT, FSP), FPAs, Operations (training, transport, IFMS, GMs, FPAs, BOPs and PPC/PPE), WOF services, Aviation and OHS.

Luthfia Cader

Executive: Support Services – Responsible for overseeing the company’s Human Capital Management, Payroll, Industrial Relations, Social Development and Fire Awareness Departments.


Goodness Lubisi

Executive: Finance and Supply Chain Management – Responsible for the financial, supply chain and asset management of the company.

Ancil Lee

Executive: Information Technology and Information Management – Responsible for IT, Infrastructure Management and the Dispatch & Coordination Functions.

Hasina Kathrada

Executive: Communications and Marketing – Responsible for offering strategic direction within the Communication and Marketing department.


Fatima Gilbert 

Personal Assistant to Managing Director and offers secretarial assistance to the Executive Committee.



Social Development

Through our Social Development initiatives,
we make a difference in the lives or our participants
as well as the communities around our bases.

Working on Fire Aviation

Trusted supplier of aerial firefighting services in South Africa.

Job Profile:

The role is responsible for creating, developing, refining and executing internal / external communications in line with the overall business strategy and ensures that the appropriate messages are developed via appropriate communications channels/platforms.

Reports to: Communication and Marketing Executive

Key Performance Areas:

  1. Corporate Communications
  • Collaborate with key stakeholders in the planning, development and delivering corporate communication to achieve objectives in engaging with business units and employees.
  • Develop, initiate and take ownership of the end-to-end delivery targeted, creative and engaging communications plans.
  • Create Internal Communication platforms and initiatives.
  • Conceptualises, copy-writes, proof-reads, edits and distributes content.
  • Develop and update annual Organizational Calendar and align the Corporate Communications Annual plan of Operations accordingly. Provide support to stakeholder on developing and/or implementing internal campaigns or events.
  • Be part of strategically driving the organisations values and culture.
  • Measure effectiveness of communications and distribution of content and recommending improvements and initiatives to achieve the business’s desired objectives.
  1. Brand Management and Compliance
  • Ensure brand compliance the Corporate Identity manual of funders.
  • Identify and procurement of Corporate Communication merchandise.
  • Design and edit corporate templates.
  1. Administration
  2. Report writing

Job Requirements:

  • Diploma or Degree in Communications / Public Relations / Marketing
  • 2 to 5 years proven experience in internal communications, public relations, marketing or similar

Required Skills:

  • Proven excellent command of the English language (written and spoken)
  • Ability to effectively communicate across multiple platforms
  • Familiar with Google Workspace, HTML, Social Media, Instant Messaging Platforms, Microsoft Office Suite

Desired Skills:

  • Internal Strategic Communications
  • Project Management (added advantage)
  • Adobe Premium – an advantage
  • Willingness to travel

Submit CV together with a motivational letter to:

Note: Please clearly indicate in the subject line for which position you are applying.

If you have not had a response from us within 30 days after the closing date, kindly accept that your application has been unsuccessful. In line with the EEA, preference will be given to those applicants whose appointment will address the demographic imbalances in our work force profile.

Covid-19 Vaccine Intent:

WOF has a mandatory Covid-19 vaccination plan in place and as such all applicants will be required to submit a vaccination certificate to be considered in the selection process.

Fire in South Africa