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Congratulation to SAESI on their accomplishment for receiving reaccreditation from IFSAC, please see below reaccreditation certificate.

Halo from SAESI, SAESI would like you to participate in a survey about your experience with SAESI. The survey will only take 5 minutes of your time and it’s easy to complete online. Click below link to participate in the survey

Your feedback is important for us to understand your needs and how we can improve our services in the future. Thank you.

As a Professional Body and caring member of the community, the Southern African Emergency
Service Institute (SAESI) have participated in a Christmas Social Responsibility program, by
ensuring that at least ten (10) children of The Cradle of Hope, will have a smile on their faces this
festive season.
SAESI have chosen five (5) girls and five (5) boys, between the ages of 13 and 18, where among
other, clothing items and basic needs where gifted.
“We are an independent social upliftment and community development organization with our core
focus being assisting women & children who find themselves in desperate need. We passionately
live according to the philosophy of “a HAND-UP and not just a HAND-OUT” – regardless of race or
religion, BECAUSE WE CARE.” – The Cradle of Hope
SAESI encourages all members of the community, who are in the position to assist the Cradle of
Hope and or any other similar Foundation, to do so – together we can make a difference.
SAESI wishes everyone a blessed and safe festive season – see you in 2024!

On behalf of SAESI we would like to congratulate our Vice President Ms Nonhlanhla Mkhwanazi on her recent appointment as Director for Fire Services Gauteng CoGTA.


Ms Mkhwanazi have the creativity and determination to do whatever she puts her mind to. We hope she feels proud on her achievement and we are confident in her ability to rise to her next challenge. With hard work comes big accomplishments, and Ms Mkhwanazi have, without question, shown this to be true.


Congratulations on this great accomplishment.


SAESI can’t wait to watch Ms Nonhlanhla Mkhwanazi continue to succeed!!

On the 29th of November 2023 the Acting CEO Ms Zelda Sutherland and the President Ms Theresa Geldenhuys of SAESI attended SAQA’s 22nd Professional Bodies forum at Silverstar Hotel.


SAESI were awarded our re-recognition certificate as a Professional Body with SAQA including the registered Professional Designation FireFighter Practitioner (SA) FFP (SA).


SAESI would like to thank SAQA for their professional and friendly staff and a very fruitful event.

View Certificate here

Saesi Financial Statement information can be made available on valid request. Kindly request access from zelda@saesi.com


SAESI elects first female president

The institute is registered as a professional body for firefighters in SA with the South African Qualifications Authority.

“One thing all women should remember is that you are responsible for your destiny and career. If you sit down and wait for things to happen, nothing will happen. However, with hard work, lots of changes can take place. Be the change. Make the changes happen.”


These were the words of the senior district manager at the CoE’s DEMS Training Academy, Theresa Geldenhuys, who recently made history by becoming the first female president of the Southern African Emergency Services Institute (SAESI).


Geldenhuys explained that SAESI was an NGO formed in 1959 dedicated to protecting life, property, and the environment.

Senior district manager at the City of Ekurhuleni’s DEMS Training Academy, Theresa Geldenhuys, was recently elected as the first female president of the Southern African Emergency Services Institute (SAESI).

SAESI wants to promote community safety and the aspirations of its members by promoting all aspects of emergency services.


Geldenhuys said she would like to get a firefighters’ education in line with NQF and improve the relationship with stakeholders, among other things.

“It’s wonderful to see the firefighters flourish and use what we taught them throughout the country and, in some cases, in other countries too.”


The newly elected president started volunteering as a firefighter in 1990. She started at the Germiston Fire Station and moved to the Leon Ferreira Fire Station in 2003. Before she became involved with emergency services, she was a nurse.


“I was a nurse originally and dealt with the firefighters who brought their patients to the casualty department at the hospital I worked at then. It looked interesting, and I joined the fire service as a volunteer. At the first motor vehicle accident, I was told to stand next to the fire engine and watch what the firefighter did. I was hooked. Then came the first factory fire. I was given an axe, and two of us were sent up on the roof to create ventilation openings. What an experience. I was sure this was what I was supposed to do. I left nursing and joined the fire service. Now, just over 32 years later, I know I made the right decision.

“I worked at various fire stations as an operational firefighter and officer. I am also an advanced life support paramedic, a hazmat technician (deals with hazardous materials) and have completed several rescue modules. I have seen horrible things and worked in strange situations. However, as part of a team, you deal with everything that comes your way. I have also seen amazing things that we celebrated. I was put on earth to do what I am doing and to make a difference in people’s lives.”

A woman in a male-dominated industry
According to Geldenhuys, being a female in a male-dominated occupation came with challenges, and if you allowed them to get you down, you would not survive.

“Sure, there is still harassment and sexism happening against female firefighters. In our occupation, there is insufficient research into health issues and cancer risks for all firefighters. However, this is the occupation I chose.

“The assumption by most men is that women can’t do the same things they do, and sometimes it is true. However, if the objective of the work is reached, the work is done. My approach is different because my life has taught me different things and different ways of thinking, but the job gets done.”

She said going through the ranks from a firefighter to a fire officer was challenging, at times, because she had to prove she was a competent firefighter.

“This made me more determined to be the best at what I did. Although I had to prove myself to fellow firefighters, I became one of the boys. I know it sounds strange, but it simply means we were a team working together. During my career, I attended lots of training and sometimes was the only female on that specific course. I completed it successfully. Although I was singled out sometimes, I had a few male colleagues who always had my back.”

Is enough done to advance women in this occupation?
“In Ekurhuleni, 26% of firefighters are females in positions from firefighters to managers. I think a lot was done to advance women in fire services countrywide. It has definitely changed a lot over the years.

Something for women considering firefighting as a career
“Know why you want to be a firefighter. It is a demanding job, and you will get physically exhausted. However, your focus should be on your goal. Be physically and mentally strong and ensure you have a good support network of people who can help you stay strong.”

“The training we do as firefighters and paramedics is tough, sometimes dirty, very physical, and sometimes mentally challenging. The training ranges from firefighter entry-level training to becoming a specialist in your field, like a fire service instructor (teaches other firefighters), a hazmat technician, a rescue technician (specialises in various rescue disciplines), and a fire inspector (does fire inspections), to name a few. Currently, I head up the Ekurhuleni Emergency Services Training Academy, accredited by various bodies to upskill firefighters.”

DEMS spokesperson William Ntladi firmly believed Geldenhuys deserved the election as the SAESI president.

“I have worked with her for some time. She shows passion and determination and wants to succeed. Her climbing the ladders of success motivates all of us.
“She still does everything physical and fitness-related and never expects to be treated differently because she is a woman,” said Ntladi.

Apart from her work, Geldenhuys enjoys baking and sewing.

See original article here

—Pngtree—woman firefighter staring into the_3181498


I am sure most of you are aware of the elections that took place in May 2023 and the outcomes of the process.

I am humbled and honoured that you have put your trust in me to elect me as your President. Congratulations Ms. N Mkhwanazi on your election as Vice-president. Together we will do our best to make a difference.

You are all aware that no elections took place in 2019 at the AGM and in 2020 COVID 19 happened that forced everything into slow motion. The result was that there are currently very few appointed office bearers. There have been several attempts to get office bearers nominated and elected, however with the dwindling membership numbers and delays, it created a bit of an issue.

With the nomination process we managed to get a few office bearers at branch and working group level and there was no need for elections because they could just be appointed in the available positions. Head Office in conjunction with the Nomination Committee is currently working on the distribution of these letters.

Advertising of all vacant office bearer positions will happen soon, and we are planning a special Council Meeting to finalize the processes, we will eventually have an Annual General Meeting.
Several members have asked questions regarding the financial status of the Institute. Below is a summary of our financial status. 

Take note that SAESI is a recognized Professional Body with SAQA and in accordance with SAQA Professional Body Policy and Criteria all financial statements have been reviewed. This process is actually a feather in our caps with SARS.


Income R 4,120,755
Expenditure R 4,522,467
Total R 401,712
Income R 3,932,206
Expenditure R 2,904,025
Total R 1,028,181
Income R 4,228,456
Expenditure R 4,115,282
Total R 113,174
Will only be available after the end of our financial year.

Theresa Geldenhuys
26 July 2023

View PDF

Arfican fireman in a uniform. Man prepare to work. Guy use radio transmitter.



SAQA Article

What does a designation mean relating to NQF?



Best Emergency Services Training Provider 2023 - South Africa


SAESI House, 295 Jorrisen Street
Off Voortrekker Road
Monument, Krugersdorp

Tel: +27 (0)11 660 7555 or +27 (0)11 660 5672
Fax: +27 (0)86 544 0008 or +27 (0)11 660 1887
Email: info@saesi.com

Monday to Thursday: 08h00 – 16h30
Friday: 08h00 – 16h00



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