About Us

First Training was established in 1997 to meet a growing demand for training and qualifications from people involved in outdoor employment, education and recreation. This service has now expanded to include standard First Aid training and shorter courses, so that workplaces and community groups can meet Workplace Health and Safety requirements. First Training's team of skilled facilitators are experienced trainers. They all have a wealth of knowledge and experience gained over many years with outdoor instructing and guiding, with NZ Outdoor Instructors Association, Surf Life Saving, First Response and Volunteer Fire Service. They apply real experience and theory to bring the learning alive.

Our lead facilitators all have Pre-Hospital Emergency Care and NZ Resuscitation Council qualifications. We have an advisory panel made up of doctors, paramedics, educators and lay people to ensure our courses meet the Australasian Resuscitation Council Guidelines and standards. First Training is NZQA registered and provides Health and Safety compliant courses. The NZQA Report of External Evaluation and Review found First Training Highly Confident in educational performance and capability in self-assessment on 15 February 2011, 29 September 2014 and recently in December 2018 Click here to read latest report

Five reasons to select us:

  • Hands on courses using scenario-based learning and interaction: promoting team building, where everyone gets involved.
  • Highly experienced facilitators at the forefront of the industry; able to deliver interesting and engaging content 
  • H+S compliant courses with NZQA credits 6400, 6401 & 6402 available if required. 
  • High degree of flexibility in terms of locations and timings, so we can suit your specific availability. 
  • Our courses are not dull, they are fun and interactive, which makes the time fly.  hopefully

Our People

Johanna Verheijen - MD Johanna has led the team at First Training for over 18 years. She completed a Diploma in Outdoor Recreation and a Bachelor of Sport Recreation in 2000. When her children went to school it enabled her to pursue a passion in outdoor education, teaching first aid and growing the team to a nation wide business. Surf Lifesaving at United North Piha keeps her busy in the summer and she can still be found mountain biking in the winter and playing with her young grandchildren as often as she can.

Mark Judge - Whangarei and Northland Mark Judge has years of experience as an outdoor educator, participating in countless activities from rock climbing, mountaineering, snowboarding, mountain biking, white water kayaking, surf life saving to surfing and diving.  He is a brilliant teacher with almost 30 years as a high school educator behind him.  

“Loved her enthusiasm and zest for all things to do with the course. It was fun and we learnt a lot in an enjoyable, engaging way.”
- Forrest Hill School - FASE - July 2021, Auckland
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