Funding for Regional Surf Life Saving Facility

Surf Life Saving NSW is pleased by the announcement that over $1 million in funding will be made available under the Coalition’s new Community Development Grants Programme to go towards establishing a dedicated training and operations centre at Port Macquarie.

“Some time ago we identified a real need to better support and safeguard our volunteers on the Mid-North Coast with a purpose-designed and built facility from which they can train, store and maintain vital lifesaving equipment and deliver first aid and CPR training to members of the public,” said Surf Life Saving NSW President Tony Haven.

The new facility will substantially increase capacity to save lives and support volunteers in the entire north of the state – in total around 45 surf life saving clubs and more than 20,000 volunteers.

The operations centre will provide services including:

  • Training and education for Surf Life Saving members in rescue and emergency response;
  • First aid and CPR training for volunteers and members of the public;
  • House vital rescue equipment such as jet skis, IRBs, radios, rescue boards etc;
  • Provide administrative support for members and surf clubs in northern NSW; and
  • Meeting rooms and base for the Mid North Coast Branch.

Tony Haven says the funding announcement is good news for volunteerism in regional areas and will help save lives.

“The new regional centre in Port Macquarie will be a fantastic boost to our surf lifesaving capacity in the mid-north coast region and surrounding areas,” said Tony Haven.

“It will be an important spoke in the wheel of our State Emergency Response system too, which saves hundreds of lives each year outside the flags.

“We’re grateful for the support from the Federal Government in helping to secure funding for this important project through the new Community Development Grants Programme, and for the ongoing assistance we have received from local, state and federal members of parliament, government agencies and emergency services organisations.”

The funding should meet about half the cost of the project and Surf Life Saving NSW will work to fund the remaining amount to establish the facility.

The building design has been finalised and the project tender will soon be opened to local construction contractors.

Support from the Port Macquarie community has been good and it is expected that the project will be completed over the next 12-18 months.

Wed 4 Dec 2013