Beach To Bush Set To Commence

Thousands of primary school students from inland NSW will soon get the opportunity to take part in vital water safety lessons ahead of summer, when some of the state’s finest surf lifesavers travel to regional NSW next week.

The Surf Life Saving NSW Beach to Bush program, supported by Clubs NSW and Cancer Institute NSW, takes place from Monday 11th – Friday 15th November 2013.

The program now into its 20th year began as a result of research conducted by Surf Life Saving Australia, which highlighted that 50% of people rescued from the surf live more than 50km from the beach.

Beach To Bush has grown significantly since its conception and is now Surf Life Saving’s most significant educational initiative aiming to teach kids a wide range of surf safety tips including general beach safety messages, sun smart strategies, rip and wave identification, sea creatures and first aid, rescues and getting help as well as outlining safety tips for other aquatic environments such as rivers and dams.

This year the program will be heading to seven regions across the state where they will visit nearly 10,000 students at schools in the areas. This year the seven tours will visit:

1.) Gunnedah, Tamworth, Moree
2.) Albury, Corowa, Culcairn
3.) Wagga Wagga, Gundagai, Tumut
4.) Armidale, Glen Innes, Inverell
5.) Orange, Gulgong, Wellington
6.) Bathurst
7.) Aberdeen, Branxton, Merriwa

Surf Life Saving NSW Academy Education Manager, Pamela Simon, says lifesavers are really looking forward to heading back to the bush to spread their message of surf safety.

“Every year we get so many lifesavers putting their hands up to participate in Beach to Bush as it is such a unique and special program.

“With statistics reflecting that children who live inland are at a higher risk of drowning on our beaches, it is as important as ever that Beach to Bush continues to help teach kids from the bush vital surf safety education in a fun and interactive way.

“Many families from western NSW may only visit the beach once or twice a year and Beach to Bush goes a long way to ensuring kids enjoy their time at the beach safely by helping them understand the benefits of swimming between the red and yellow flags,” said Pamela Simon.

The Beach to Bush Program is the largest and most innovative surf safety education program in Australia, having reached more than 260,000 primary school students since it began in 1994.

To follow our lifesavers on their journey out west, add @SLSNSW on Twitter and Instagram.

Thu 7 Nov 2013