SURF LIFE SAVING QUEENSLAND
ISSUE 7 | AUTUMN 2015
SUMMER IN REVIEW The red and yellow flags come down on another volunteer patrol season.
WESTPAC HELICOPTER The dawn of a new era with announcement of chief pilot handover.
SURF SPORTS Lifesavers young and old line up to compete for state glory.
WELCOME On behalf of Surf Life Saving Queensland, I would like to welcome you to the autumn edition of our quarterly publication, Beyond Patrol. Despite the peak holiday period officially coming to a close, it continues to be a busy and productive period of time for our organisation, both on and off the beach. From the surf, to the sky, and out in the community, we remain committed to extending our reach at all levels across the state in our bid to achieve our overarching vision of ‘zero preventable deaths in Queensland waters’. Just as the summer months have wound up for another year, so too have more than 8,000 of our volunteer surf lifesavers across Queensland who raised the red and yellow flags one final time for the 2014/15 season on Sunday 26 April. The final day of patrol was marked by a series of Memorial Day ceremonies across the state to pay our respects to those who have lost their lives in the surf this season.
While volunteers from Forrest Beach to Rainbow Bay have wrapped up for the season, our North Queensland members will continue to patrol their local beaches through to the end of November, and our professional lifeguard service remains active 365 days each year. On a personal note, it was a wonderful to see more than 3,000 of Queensland’s top surf sport athletes line up to compete at the recent Queensland Surf Life Saving Championships on the Sunshine Coast. Congratulations to all competitors, officials, volunteers and staff members for their contributions to the success of our pinnacle sporting event. This particular edition of Beyond Patrol provides a thorough snapshot of the summer season that was, and some of the key developments and initiatives being rolled out by SLSQ in a bid to help protect and safeguard swimmers on Queensland beaches.
While it’s rewarding to reflect on some of our recent organisational achievements, it’s pertinent to note that our commitment to saving lives is unwavering. This mission continues to resonate strongly through all levels of SLSQ and underpins every decision made – from the boardroom to the beach. I look forward to working with all stakeholders, sponsors and the recentlyelected State Government as we work towards delivering on our vision for the benefit of all Queensland beachgoers. Yours in lifesaving,
John Brennan OAM CEO, Surf Life Saving Queensland
Surf Life Saving Queensland 18 Manning Street, South Brisbane, QLD, 4101 t. 07 3846 8000 | w. lifesaving.com.au BEYOND PATROL STAFF AND CONTRIBUTERS Writers/Editors: Cameron Ward, Saira Manns Designers: Chloe Koklas, Hannah West
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SURF LIFESAVERS GATHER TO REMEMBER THOSE WHO LOST THEIR LIVES IN THE SURF Surf Life Saving Queensland marked the end of its 2014/15 volunteer patrol season on Sunday 26 April with a Memorial Day to pay tribute to those who have tragically lost their lives in the surf this summer. SLSQ’s third annual Memorial Day saw surf lifesavers join together at six separate ceremonies across the state to remember and reflect on those tragedies, before laying a red and yellow wreath in the ocean as a mark of respect. The Memorial Day ceremonies also served as an opportunity for volunteers to reflect on the end of the peak summer season and say goodbye to those from within the Surf Life Saving family who have passed away during the past 12 months. There have been eight preventable drownings on Queensland beaches since 1 July 2014, with investigations revealing all of these occurred either outside of SLSQ’s designated patrol times or away from the red and yellow flagged areas. SLSQ chief executive officer John Brennan said the organisation remains committed at all levels to reducing this figure in its bid to ultimately break the drowning cycle. “Our overarching vision as an organisation is to achieve ‘zero preventable deaths in Queensland waters’ and that’s exactly what we’ll continue to strive towards,” he said. “Unfortunately that hasn’t been the case this year and we’ve seen eight people lose their lives in the surf. As far as we’re concerned, that’s eight too many, and we’ll continue to explore all possible avenues to increase our protection and expand our reach along Queensland’s coastline.
“It’s disappointing to see that all of these drownings occurred away from our patrols and that’s something that we’ll continue to address moving forward. At the very least, it reinforces the importance of swimmers taking a moment or two to consider their personal safety and wellbeing before entering the water at an unpatrolled location,” he said.
The ceremonies included a number of short speeches from club representatives to mark the occasion, followed by a minute of silence and the laying of a red and yellow wreath at sea by club members. SLSQ’s Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter performed a fly-over at the Gold and Sunshine Coast ceremonies as a mark of respect.
Mr Brennan said the Memorial Day was a poignant reminder about the important role that surf lifesavers continue to play along Queensland’s coastline. “Memorial Day has developed into a really important occasion for the surf lifesaving community each year,” he said.
“Memorial Day has developed into a really important occasion for the surf lifesaving community each year” – John Brennan, CEO “It’s a chance for us to come together, support one another, reflect and grieve if necessary, but it’s also an opportunity to remember all of the wonderful things that we’ve achieved across the season and all of the people who are still with us today thanks to the efforts of Queensland’s surf lifesavers and lifeguards.” Ceremonies were held at six separate locations across the state including Cairns, Picnic Bay, Tannum Sands, Maroochydore, Kurrawa and Coolangatta Surf Life Saving Clubs.
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QUEENSLAND’S BEST HIT THE SURF AT STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS Rivalries were reignited and reputations were put on the line last month when more than 3,000 of the state’s top surf sport athletes flocked to Maroochydore Beach on the Sunshine Coast across two weekends in March for the 2015 Queensland Surf Life Saving Championships.
including the iron events, surf races, board paddles and beach sprints.
The pinnacle sporting event on SLSQ’s calendar saw lifesavers aged from under 11 through to over 70 put their surf skills and fitness to the ultimate test across two weekends of hard-fought competition.
The action continued the following weekend with the Masters competition on Friday 27 March, before Queensland’s premier ironmen and women took centre stage at the Senior Championships on 28-29 March. Gold Coast club Northcliffe proved to be a dominant force across the weekend, recording its 11th consecutive overall victory at the prestigious event.
Regardless of the event, athletes or discipline, the underlying purpose of our sporting competition is to improve and refine lifesaving skills, recruit and retain members and, ultimately, save lives on Queensland beaches. The action kicked off with the Queensland Youth Championships across three days from March 20-22, with more than 1,500 nippers hitting the beach to compete against each other in a variety of disciplines
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Host club Maroochydore made the most of the local conditions to record a resounding win over close rival Alexandra Headland and defending champions Northcliffe.
In the blue-ribbon iron events, Northcliffe’s Rebecca Creedy beat home a star-studded field to take out her first Queensland title, while Mooloolaba’s Matt Bevilacqua mastered the tricky conditions on his way to a win in the ironman final. Each year the Queensland Surf Life Saving Championships continue to grow in size and stature, reflecting a continued thirst from our members for elite competition against their peers from across the state. However, what can often be lost amongst the thrills and spills of racing is that each and every competitor who lines up at one
of SLSQ’s sporting carnivals is a trained surf lifesaver, with the skills and knowledge to patrol Queensland’s coastline and protect beachgoers. And therein lies the key difference between surf lifesaving and other sporting codes. Regardless of the event, athletes or discipline, the underlying purpose of our sporting competition is to improve and refine lifesaving skills, recruit and retain members and, ultimately, feed back into our vision of saving lives on Queensland beaches. From beach sprints and board paddles to surf swims and the highly-technical rescue and resuscitation event, all of the skills performed in the competitive arena are the same skills that lifesavers and lifeguards are required to carry out on a daily basis when patrolling Queensland beaches. Importantly, the Queensland Championships serve to highlight those vital skills and fitness components to help recognise members who are not only world-class athletes, but skilled surf lifesavers as well.
JUNIOR MEMBERS PUT LIFESAVING SKILLS TO THE TEST Each and every summer more than 8,000 patrolling surf lifesavers put on the iconic red and yellow cap and line up on Queensland’s coastline to help watch over and safeguard beachgoers.
Brayden for his efforts and quick thinking and said it could have been a much different outcome were it not for the youngster.
It was a similar story for Noosa nipper Frances Cogill when she encountered a fellow competitor in distress recently while contesting the Sunshine Coast Branch Championships at Dicky Beach.
In addition to this, some 10,000 youngsters across the state spend their summer weekends learning the basic principles of beach safety through Surf Life Saving’s iconic Nippers program, which has been officially running in Queensland for almost half a century.
While the Nippers program is intended to be both fun and engaging, there’s also a serious safety side to it, with youngsters learning life-long and potentially life saving skills along the way.
Frances was in the midst of racing the semi-final of her under-11 board race when another young competitor nearby was hit by a large wave, which knocked her into the water and dislocated her shoulder. Immediately putting aside any ambitions to qualify for the final, Frances abandoned the race and paddled over the assist and rescue her fellow competitor.
“At the end of the day, they train and they do Nippers for one purpose, which is to eventually be a patrolling member on the beach and do it well. If you had someone else there that didn’t know what to do or have the surf skills, it could have turned out differently,” he told the Sunshine Coat Daily.
Importantly, the skills and training that she picked up in the Nippers program meant that Frances was in a position to assess the situation and respond accordingly to ensure a safe outcome for all involved.
While the program is intended to be both fun and engaging, there’s also a serious safety side to it, with youngsters learning life-long and potentially life saving skills along the way. Basic rescue and first aid skills are instilled into nippers from an early age ensuring that if and when accidents and emergencies occur, they have an understanding of how to respond and react accordingly. As a nipper at Kawana Waters, Brayden Drew has been learning how to save lives since he was seven. Recently, the plucky 12-year-old was forced to put all those years of training into practice when he encountered a father and daughter duo struggling in the surf on the Sunshine Coast.
Photo: Warren Lynam / AAP “Kawana Waters nipper Brayden Drew”
Brayden was competing at Surf Life Saving Queensland’s Youth Championships at Maroochydore when he decided to go for a board paddle between his events. He didn’t know it at the time, but his decision to venture into the surf that afternoon would have lifesaving consequences. While heading out into the water, Brayden noticed a man and his eight-year-old daughter caught in a rip approximately 25 metres off-shore and struggling to stay afloat. With his years of nipper training immediately kicking in, Brayden paddled over without hesitation and assisted the young girl onto his board before successfully bringing her back into shore. Her father was also able to make it safely back to the beach. Speaking to the Sunshine Coast Daily after the incident, Kawana Waters SLSC junior activities chairperson Jason Lenske praised
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SLSQ ANNOUNCES NEW CHIEF PILOT FOR HELICOPTER SERVICE Surf Life Saving Queensland’s (SLSQ) iconic Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter Service (WLRHS) has undergone a significant changing of the guard this year, with the announcement of a new chief pilot to spearhead the aerial search and rescue service moving forward. After more than a decade at the helm of the WLRHS, one of the oldest communitybased helicopter services in the world, Peter Bird has stepped down from the role of chief pilot and handed over the reins to Paul Gibson. Mr Gibson comes to the role with more than 28 years experience in the aviation industry, including the past two as a pilot with SLSQ. As chief pilot he will be responsible for the safe and effective operations of SLSQ’s helicopter services in accordance with requirements set out by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority. “The Westpac Rescue Helicopter is a regular and iconic sight along Queensland’s coastline each year and, for me personally, it’s a great honour to be appointed as chief pilot of the service,” Mr Gibson said.
During this time as chief pilot, Mr Bird flew hundreds of missions along Queensland’s coastline, working with professional crew members and volunteer surf lifesavers to save countless lives in the process. However, it was the key role he played during the 2011 Brisbane floods which he highlights as some of the most satisfying and challenging work of his career.
“The Westpac Rescue Helicopter is a regular and iconic sight along Queensland’s coastline each year and, for me personally, it’s a great honour to be appointed as chief pilot of the service.” - Paul Gibson, Chief Pilot. Battling low visibility, heavy winds and torrential rain, Mr Bird and the WLRHS crew worked tireless across the Lockyer Valley and Esk Region to directly save the lives of seven people through winch rescues.
“Moving forward, we’ll continue to look for areas to build upon and improve our helicopter services, which ultimately feed back into helping Surf Life Saving Queensland achieve its vision of ‘zero preventable deaths in Queensland waters’.”
“All missions and rescues that I’ve been involved with over the years have their own special meanings to me, but our operations during the Brisbane floods and all of the rescues that we completed across that week are certainly a stand out,” Mr Bird said.
The announcement has seen outgoing chief pilot Peter Bird step down after overseeing a period of extensive growth across the past ten years, with the service expanding significantly to include a second full-time helicopter based on the Sunshine Coast, and an additional two helicopters which are owned and operated by SLSQ on behalf of the Queensland Police Service.
“I personally flew about 30 hours that week, and it was amongst the hardest flying that I’ve ever done. The rain that was happening during that time was horrendous, and sometimes I still get flashbacks when we’re flying in bad weather. I’ve flown all around the world in helicopters and I’ve never seen anything like that. I hope I never have to again.”
As SLSQ’s ‘eye in the sky’, the WLRHS performs regular patrols along South East Queensland’s coastline, carrying out a variety of tasks including beach surveillance, shark warnings, preventative actions, and search and rescue missions both on and off the beach. With a team of highly-trained men and women, encompassing experienced pilots, professional staff and volunteer surf lifesavers, the service exists for one reason and one reason only – to save lives. The WLRHS is a full-time service with its pilots and crew on-call 365 days a year. Despite the peak summer months coming to an end, it has continued to be a busy period for the pilots and crew of the WLRHS. Last month saw crews on the Sunshine Coast perform several rescues while on routine patrols, saving the life of an adult male who was submerged between Mooloolaba and Alexandra Headland, and then rescuing a 15-year-old male at Point Arkwright who was unable to make it back to shore after become separated from his boogie board.
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THE RED AND YELLOW ARMY PACKS UP THE FLAGS AFTER A SUCCESSFUL SUMMER SEASON After eight months and more than 300,000 hours on patrol, the state’s volunteer surf lifesavers from Forrest Beach down to Rainbow Bay raised the red and yellow flags one final time when Surf Life Saving Queensland’s 2014/15 patrol season officially came to a close on Sunday 26 April. The red and yellow army of volunteer surf lifesavers kept Queensland beaches safe on weekends and public holidays since 20 September 2014, and are now in the midst of a well-earned rest before the 2015/16 patrol season commences in the September school holidays this year. Throughout the season, Queensland’s volunteer surf lifesavers spent some 331,952 hours on patrol, performing 114,579 preventative actions, 5,388 first aid treatments and, most importantly, saving more than 2,000 lives through in-water rescues in the process. These figures alone provide a genuine and tangible reflection of the vital role that volunteer surf lifesavers continue to play along Queensland’s coastline each and every year. SLSQ lifesaving services manager Peta Lawlor said the state’s surf lifesavers would no doubt enjoy their winter break after another successful season on the beach. Ü
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HOURS ON PATROL
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“Our surf lifesavers have done a tremendous job across the peak summer months, in sometimes challenging and difficult conditions, so full credit and thanks goes out to each and every individual who donned the red and yellow cap and lined up to patrol a beach this season,” Ms Lawlor said. “It requires a great deal of training, hard work and dedication to become a fullyqualified patrolling surf lifesaver. It’s not always an easy job, but it’s a vital role and this season our volunteers across the state continued to solidify their reputation as genuine lifesavers in every sense of the word. “Despite this, it can often be easy to forget that these men and women are all volunteers who actively give up their own time to help watch over and protect swimmers on our beaches. “Their efforts have been nothing short of remarkable with more than 2,000 lives saved since September alone. Importantly, that’s 2,000 people who were able to go home to their loved ones and go on with the rest of their lives thanks to the training and quick thinking of Queensland’s volunteer surf lifesavers,” she said. Meanwhile our northern members, from Mission Beach to Port Douglas, will continue to patrol their local beaches during the cooler months through to November. It has certainly been another groundbreaking season for the state’s peak authority on coastal safety, with SLSQ experiencing strong growth and expansion both on and off the beach. This saw SLSQ continue to expand its reach along Queensland’s coastline in a bid to eliminate drownings. Once again we actively rolled out extended services and roving patrols across peak periods to cope with an influx of beachgoers. This included a continuation of mid-week patrols on the Gold and Sunshine Coasts during school holidays,
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in addition to an Easter patrol service on Moreton Island.
targeting a wide variety of groups including individuals, schools and organisations.
With thanks to vital government and community support, SLSQ remains committed to adopting innovative practices and forward thinking to achieve our vision of zero preventable deaths in Queensland waters and, with that in mind, we continued to conduct various trials of rescue equipment across the summer months in a bid to offer increased protection to beachgoers.
Similarly, it was also a busy summer for SLSQ’s community awareness team, which promotes surf safety and awareness as a crucial part of breaking the drowning cycle.
This season alone, SLSQ performed extensive testing on the use of portable electric watercraft on patrols and in search and rescue missions, while unmanned aerial vehicles are still an area of interest for the organisation moving forward.
It has certainly been another groundbreaking season for the state’s peak authority on coastal safety, with Surf Life Saving Queensland experiencing strong growth and expansion both on and off the beach. Importantly, our network of coastal cameras, positioned at high risk blackspots along Queensland’s coastline, continue to play a key role in protecting beachgoers around the clock. This network not only serves to significantly improve patrol and surveillance capacity, but also provides surf lifesavers and lifeguards with real-time and tangible information on surf conditions, wave height and beach usage. This network continues to be expanded for the benefit of all beachgoers, with surf safety cameras installed at Elliott River Mouth, Mon Repos, Palmers Creek and Tannum Sands across the past 12 months. Away from the red and yellow flags, SLSQ continue to place lifesavers in the community through the provision of regular first aid and CPR training courses
Across the 2014/15 patrol season, SLSQ educated more than 309,000 people through a variety of initiatives and programs including Little Lifesavers, Breaka Beach to Bush, On The Same Wave, and the Beach Safe Schools Program. These efforts not only increase surf safety awareness but also allow people to make informed and potentially lifesaving decisions before even stepping onto a beach. While most of the state’s surf lifesavers will now be taking a well-earned rest until September, professional lifeguard services will continue to operate at Queensland’s more popular beaches across the winter months, as will lifesavers in North Queensland. SLSQ will also remain active across the winter months, with 24/7 emergency response groups active and operating in most regions across the state, while on the Gold Coast, lifesavers will continue to perform roving dawn patrols each day of the year. The Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter Service will also continue to operate in South East Queensland during the cooler months, with crews remaining on-call around the clock to assist with emergency search and rescue operations. Moving forward, SLSQ remains committed all levels of the organisation to extending our services and reach in a bid to break the drowning cycle and achieve our overarching vision of ‘zero preventable deaths in Queensland waters’.
To read more about recent rescues that SLSQ members have performed, see page 14 of this issue.
FIRST AID TREATMENTS
LIVES SAVED VIA IN-WATER RESCUES
Proud Community Partner:
REDCLIFFE SURF LIFESAVER NAMED QUEENSLAND’S TOP NIPPER One of the first things that Harry Graham did when his family moved to Australia from the UK was join his local surf life saving club at Redcliffe, and he’s never looked back. In March, Harry was formally recognised as Queensland’s top nipper after taking out this year’s Breaka Under-14 Junior Surf Lifesaver of the Year award at a special presentation on the Sunshine Coast.
“With young members like Harry in the movement, I think it’s safe to say that we’ll have a pretty strong future ahead of us.” – Brenda Lofthouse, Membership Development Manager Harry beat five other nominees from across the state for the award, which remains the highest individual accolade for Queensland’s young surf lifesavers. It marks the first time a nipper from Redcliffe Peninsula SLSC has taken out the prestigious award.
“I love getting down to the beach every weekend and you couldn’t do that in England. A beach trip in England was probably once a year, so to be able to get involved in surf lifesaving here has just been amazing,” Harry said after the announcement. “I’ve learnt so much from surf lifesaving; it’s given me so many new skills including teamwork and leadership as well as the confidence to do so many things I never would have been able to do before,” he said. SLSQ membership development manager Brenda Lofthouse congratulated Harry on his win, saying it was a genuine reflection of his dedication and passion for surf lifesaving. “This award is the highest individual honour that can be given to our younger members, so it certainly goes to show the level of respect that Harry has earned, not just from his club-mates but from the wider surf lifesaving community as well,” she said. The Year 9 student qualified for his Surf Rescue Certificate at the start of summer and, since then, has volunteered more than 60 hours to help patrol his local beach. In
2014/15 he was voted as the Male Nipper Club Captain at Redcliffe Peninsula SLSC. “Despite his relatively young age, Harry’s already developed into an extremely valuable and well-respected member. He’s extremely active with beach patrols, mentors younger nippers and is always putting his hand up to help with fundraising whenever he’s needed by the club,” Ms Lofthouse said. Harry was one of six finalists representing their club and branch from around the state including Harriet Grant (North Queensland), Joachim Born (North Barrier), Jordan Winning (Wide Bay Capricorn), Ky Curtis (South Coast) and Sophie Clemson (Point Danger). “Surf Life Saving Queensland is an organisation built on the strength of our membership and, with young members like Harry and our other finalists in the movement, I think it’s safe to say that we’ll have a pretty strong future ahead of us,” Ms Lofthouse said. Pictured above (L-R): Jordan Winning, Harry Graham and Ky Curtis. BEYOND PATROL | 11
Pictured (L-R):Fiona Dunn, Tiffany Di Ianni, Kristy Mitchell, Bonnie Rogers
RECORD BROKEN AS 2015 SUMMER SURF GIRL WINNERS ANNOUNCED A member of Marcoola Surf Life Saving Club for over two decades, the proudest moment of Tiffany Di Ianni’s lifesaving journey was being named the 2015 Summer Surf Girl at a Gala Ball held at Jupiters Hotel & Casino on Saturday 2 May. In another outstanding year for Surf Life Saving Queensland’s largest and mostenduring club-based fundraising initiative, 14 young female surf lifesavers from around Queensland took the opportunity to embark on a year-long fundraising and community awareness campaign on behalf of their respective Surf Life Saving Clubs, raising an outstanding collective total of $792,013.93. Kristy Mitchell from Burleigh Heads Mowbray Park SLSC re-wrote the history
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books, named the Summer Surf Girl Highest Fundraiser after a record-breaking highest individual total raised for her surf life saving club – a phenomenal $232,832.
Judging panel chair George Hill said the judges were extremely impressed with the calibre of the 2015 Summer Surf Girl entrants.
Fiona Dunn from Mackay SLSC was named the 2015 Summer Surf Girl Runner-Up while Bonnie Rogers from Broadbeach SLSC rounded out the winners list, announced as the 2015 Summer Surf Girl Entrants’ Choice as voted by her fellow entrants.
“These young women performed exceptionally well, not only during the final judging but throughout the program. It was very difficult to distinguish a winner and came right down to the wire, as each entrant has been a fantastic ambassador for surf lifesaving over the past year,” Mr Hill said.
The final judging week, held 29 April-2 May, brought to an end Surf Life Saving Queensland’s (SLSQ) year-long fundraising initiative, which has now raised more than $15.4 million for surf clubs across the state since 1964.
“Every entrant has taken on this challenge on top of their other commitments as students and career women, and we are proud of all of them for the dedication they have shown to the lifesaving movement.”
Mr Hill said Tiffany was chosen based on her fundraising initiatives, commitment to community education and surf lifesaving knowledge, and will now begin her year as an official ambassador for SLSQ.
not only through fundraising but also through patrolling the beach (over 50 hours this season) and her commitment to community education and membership development.
“Tiffany was really the standout throughout all aspects of the final judging, demonstrating her commitment to lifesaving and to the Summer Surf Girl program,” he said.
“We are confident that Tiffany will take on her role over the next 12 months as an ambassador for Surf Life Saving with the same passion and commitment she demonstrated during the program and will champion the benefits of surf lifesaving to the community. SLSQ looks forward to working with Tiffany over the next year.
“Every entrant has taken on this challenge on top of their other commitments as students and career women, and we are proud of all of them for the dedication they have shown to the lifesaving movement.” “Tiffany has a long and proud history with surf lifesaving over the past 22 years, showing her strong ties to her club
“Kristy Mitchell has also demonstrated outstanding efforts with her recordbreaking fundraising total. To have raised more than $200,000 for her surf life saving club is a true testament to her dedication and commitment.” The Summer Surf Girl program is first and foremost a member development program which seeks to engage female members within Surf Life Saving and to develop their skills and experience for their future careers within and outside the movement.
All funds raised are distributed back into participating clubs for the maintenance and purchase of new rescue equipment, surf safety education, member development, increasing volunteer memberships and expansion of training programs.
Fundraising facts: • The Summer Surf Girl program has raised $15.4 million for surf life saving clubs in Queensland since 1964 • Kristy Mitchell from Burleigh Heads Mowbray Park SLSC now holds the record for highest fundraising total by an individual, raising $232,832 in 2015. • The highest collective total ever raised was in 2012, with the entrants’ efforts resulting in $1,081,085.
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RECENT RESCUES HIGHLIGHT THE LIFESAVING EFFORTS OF OUR BRAVE MEN AND WOMEN Despite the peak summer months officially coming to a close, it has continued to be a busy period of time for the state’s surf lifesavers and lifeguards alike, with a number of recent rescues reaffirming the crucial and ongoing role they play along Queensland’s coastline. This was no more evident than in March, when a group of Noosa’s volunteer surf lifesavers were forced to put all of their training and experience into practice after a light aircraft crashed into the ocean near Main Beach on the Sunshine Coast. After witnessing the crash lifesavers on duty immediately sprung into action, entering the water to successfully locate and retrieve the unconscious pilot, before bringing him back to shore where he was transported to hospital for treatment. Similar acts of bravery and selflessness are routinely carried out each and every week by Surf Life Saving Queensland’s (SLSQ) front-line members and professional staff. The courage and commitment exhibited by these men and women on a regular basis not only serves as a testament to their training, but also a tangible demonstration of their dedication to our vision of saving lives. This was recently personified when five members from across the Wide Bay region were acknowledged and celebrated at the Queensland Bravery Awards for the role they played in the successful rescue of three people during Tropical Cyclone Oswald.
From the sea to the sky, the surf lifesaving movement remains committed at all levels to saving lives and helping people in their time of need. Julie Davis, John Davis, Reid Tucker and Joanna Tolvanen from Moore Park and Martin Cole from Bundaberg were presented with a Group Bravery Citation after battling harrowing conditions to rescue three people, including a female
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aged in her 80s, left stranded on rooftops following heavy rain and flooding across the region. The Queensland Bravery Awards are designed to recognise the heroic actions of those people who have placed the safety and lives of others before their own, and there is no doubt the efforts of those five men and women fall into this category. From the sea to the sky, the surf lifesaving movement remains committed at all levels to saving lives and helping people in their time of need. In recent moths, the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter has also proved to be a lifesaver in every sense of the word. In April, the service was performing a routine
aerial patrol on the Sunshine Coast when crews spotted a 15-year-old male who was struggling in a rip and unable to make it back to shore after becoming separated from his body board. The pilot and crew responded quickly and efficiently to successfully winch the young man out of danger and back to shore, where he was reunited with his family. Every year thousands of surf lifesavers and lifeguards line up along Queensland’s coastline to protect and watch over beachgoers, and it’s certainly not a job they take lightly. Weeks, months and sometimes years of training are dedicated to ensuring they are ready to act accordingly when that moment of need comes.
AUSTRALIAN PM TOURS NOOSA HEADS SURF CLUB Noosa Heads Surf Life Saving Club recently rolled out the red and yellow carpet and welcomed Australian Prime Minister the Honourable Tony Abbot MP along with Deputy Prime Minister the Honourable Warren Truss MP to the club. The gentlemen toured club facilities and spent time with volunteer surf lifesavers and nippers to talk about all things beach safety. Noosa Heads was recognised by their guests for its significant work on the
It is the generous involvement of our partners that enables us to continue to keep our beaches safe. Surf Life Saving Queensland would like to thank these organisations for their ongoing support.
beach and ongoing contribution to the local community, culminating in the club winning Surf Life Saving Australiaâ€™s Club of the Year award in 2013 and National Community Program of the Year award in 2014. The visit also highlighted the vital and ongoing support from the Australian Government to Surf Life Saving across the country.
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â€œThe proceeds we generate go towards the purchase of vital lifesaving equipment and also enable the ongoing support and work our surf lifesavers do in saving lives every day.â€?
ANYONE CAN SAVE A LIFE. LEARN FIRST AID. For course bookings and enquiries, contact: 1300 766 257 firstname.lastname@example.org www.alaq.com.au
Despite the warmer months coming to an end, it continues to be a busy period for Surf Life Saving Queensland as we work towards protecting b...