CFOA SW is the South West branch of CFOA. CFOA is a professional membership association representing the Fire and Rescue Service. Membership is open to principal fire officers/chief executives, area managers and non-uniformed equivalents. Information on how to join the Association can be found here.
At the CFOA SW annual general meeting held on 15 June 2010, members agreed that CFOA SW should focus on three themes:
- ‘Visioning' - providing an insight and an opportunity to debate key themes emerging nationally and regionally;
- ‘Lobbying' - influencing within and outside of the FRS and providing a voice for the SW FRSs on a national level reflecting the needs of the SW; and
- ‘Continuous Professional Development' - developing members and others to be better able to meet the challenges of the future.
The new structure of CFOA (SW) is:
- Chair- Steve Widnell (Area Manager - Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service). .
- Vice Chair, National CFOA Members Sounding Board Representative and Lead for Lobbying - Mick Dixon (Area Manager - Avon Fire & Rescue Service)
- Secretary - Darren Gunter (CFO - Dorset Fire & Rescue Service)
- Lead for Visioning- Lorraine Houghton (Director of Service Improvement - Avon Fire & Rescue Service)
- Lead for CPD - Mark Gaskarth (Area Manager - Wltshire FRS)
The Chair and Lead for Visioning will have a co-opted role onto the Executive Management Group to provide a voice for the wider membership of CFOA (SW) in respect of the strategic management and scrutiny role of EMG in respect of the programme of regional and sub-regional collaboration.
The CPD lead takes the lead role for organising two CPD events per year.
CFOA SW will organise four events a year, which will alternate between CFOA members only events and CPD events which will now also be open to non-members. The purpose of opening up the CPD events is to attract a wider audience of aspiring officers and non-uniform colleagues and seek greater engagement of potential future members by giving them an insight into the role and ethos of CFOA and CFOA SW, as well as supporting their development. There will also be occasions where the CPD events are run in conjunction with other professional bodies, e.g. the IFE. Each of the events will have a topical theme and it is hoped to attract a high calibre of speakers/contributors to stimulate debate and encourage specific outcomes to be achieved. These outcomes will be linked to the three key themes of Visioning, Lobbying and Continuous Professional Development