Fire Awareness and Intervention Programme

Fire and Emergency New Zealand

Fire Awareness and Intervention Programme

The Fire Awareness & Intervention Programme (FAIP) is a free consequences-based education programme designed to stop young people, aged from 5 to 17, lighting fires. It aims to do this by raising their awareness of the dangers and consequences of lighting fires.

Every year FAIP receives over 400 referrals for young people to attend the programme.

Over 90% of young people who complete this programme are not involved in further fire setting. As shown by a University of Auckland study looking at repeat offending behaviours of FAIP participants over a 10-year period.

The aim of FAIP

The aim of the programme is to reduce the number of deaths, injuries and the millions of dollars worth of property damage caused by juvenile fire setting.

The programme doesn’t try to make the young person feel guilty, but rather educates them so they know the dangers of fire, the speed it spreads, and how easily accidents happen.

New Zealand law recognises both intentional and reckless damage by fire, as arson. Many of the fires started by young people are not with malicious intent, but most often caused by a lack of understanding of the speed of fire-growth, and the potential consequences of their actions. While the intent may be different, the impact of their actions still has serious and at times fatal results.

In New Zealand, young people are over-represented among fire-setting offenders. In 2009 63% of apprehensions were under 17 years of age.

We provide FAIP as a specialist intervention programme for young people who set fires.

Listen to Radio New Zealand's journalist Sue Ingram as she investigates FAIP. Sue interviews participants and their families, psychologists, Police, schools, and FAIP staff as she explores why young people are involved in fire lighting and how FAIP helps them overcome this behaviour.

How does the programme work?

The FAIP programme is delivered by a firefighter, trained as a FAIP practitioner, and usually in a home setting. The programme is strictly confidential and voluntary (except for referrals by the Police or the court). The content and delivery of the programme varies according to the age and maturity of the young person.

Practitioners use education and behaviour modification resources to challenge and correct the negative fire-lighting behaviour.

Understand more about the intervention process.

Referring a young person to FAIP

Parents, caregivers, schools, Youth Aid, or anyone who has legal care of someone aged under 17, can refer a child to FAIP.

You can contact FAIP by calling 0800 FIRE INFO (0800 3473 4636), or by filling out the referral form below and emailing it to FAIP@fireandemergency.nz.

Once you've made a referral, you can expect a call from a FAIP practitioner within 3 days. The FAIP intervention usually takes place within 10 days of referral.