CFA Juniors attend the 2023 Australian Fire Cadets Championships

Member News image The CFA delegation after our team challenge


This September CFA was invited to send a delegation of 12 Juniors to the Australian Fire Cadets Championships (AFCC), hosted by the NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS), south of Sydney.  


CFA took two teams of six Juniors and four Junior Leaders from across the state, flying up to Sydney to enjoy a brief day trip of the city before heading to the AFCC. In total, more than 160 fire and emergency services juniors (aged 12-15 years old) from across Australia put their skills to the test.

Teams were invited from across NSW, Victoria, South Australia, Queensland, Western Australia to participate in the skills-based competition.  

During the event, first hosted by the NSW RFS in 2007, cadets participate in life-like scenarios designed to test their skills, initiative and safety procedures. The two-day competition was a real showcase of the exceptional technical skills, enthusiasm, teamwork and leadership of young firefighters.

The events challenge leadership, initiative, and teamwork through a mix of realistic scenarios and team-based challenges, and included clearing debris (mulch) to clear a hose path, and the knapsack relay where teams are required to dress in full protective clothing before collecting and using water from a knapsack to hit targets.

Events are timed, with time penalties being awarded to teams that fail to complete the event in safely and efficiently, and to teams that do not demonstrate communication and teamwork on the ground. 

Our 12 Juniors had little time to prepare, only meeting in person for the first time at Tullamarine Airport. This was a significant disadvantage compared to the NSW teams that had time to learn and practise as a team.

Despite this, CFA’s Juniors learned, planned, and executed all events while demonstrating excellence in teamwork and communication throughout. CFA’s two teams even managed to place in the top 10 of 24 teams in more than five events - something that is worth celebrating.

It was wonderful seeing 12 young people from across the state come together, bond, and make connections that will last many years into their CFA careers.

“I’ve learned about teamwork, 100 per cent. The way you communicate and direct each other in the competition gives you a lot of life skills you can use in the future,” Beaconsfield Fire Brigade Junior Jett Zotos said.

“It’s given me a better understanding of what CFA is and see how other states work too,” Wallan Fire Brigade Junior Cooper Price said.

Congratulations to all who participated, and thank you once again to NSW RFS for the continued invitation.   


  • Member News imageQuick walking tour of Sydney before the AFCC
  • Member News image Planning event strategies by torchlight
  • Member News image Teamwork in the Knapsack Relay
  • Member News image A (slightly muddy) team challenge
  • Member News image A quick start from CFA
Submitted by Chris Melenhorst, Volunteer Sustainability (Youth Team)