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Our young people come to Surf Life Saving with drive, passion and a commitment to change for a brighter future for the Movement. It is important that Clubs work towards engaging young people so as to make the most of what they have to offer, and to ensure strong succession planning for the future of the Club.

Youth Engagement Plan

Clubs looking for youth recruitment and retention support can use the newly created Youth Engagement Plan.

This 6 step plan gives clubs easy to implement ideas in both a lifesaving and social setting. It can be used to motivate nippers and young lifesavers in continuing their membership and surf lifesaving activities, and requires minimal funding or resources.

SLSA Youth Engagement Program (YEPs)

Often Surf Life Saving programs for youth aged over thirteen offer very little structure in comparison to the Junior Activities Program and this can present problems with engaging and retaining youth in Surf Life Saving. This is a real issue as this age group is highly valuable to Surf Life Saving, making up one third of our patrolling membership.

The SLSA Youth Engagement Program (YEPs) provides youth members with a structured engagement program to keep them motivated and involved in Surf Life Saving. The program also offers them the opportunity to explore and become involved in a range of areas within the movement which they may not have previously considered.

The Youth Engagement Program aims to:

  • Engage and expose participants to a variety of activities and pathways available within surf life saving
  • Increase the retention of members between 13-18 years of age – assisting the transition from the junior movement into the senior movement
  • Encourage continuous development of youth
  • Promote increased participation and commitment of youth
  • Increase the recognition of members through the identification of contributions and activities of 13-18 year old members
  • Positively promote youth as respected members and citizens within their local community

Youth members earn points known as ‘surf creds’ for engaging in a wide range of activities offered by Surf Life Saving with a goal of gaining nationally recognised awards and a log of achievements and contributions. Participants need to engage in all areas of Surf Life Saving to gain an award level including Development, Surf Sports and Lifesaving.

Duke Of Edinburgh Award

The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award is a global youth development program, empowering young Australians aged 14-24 to explore their full potential regardless of their location or circumstance. For more than 20 years the Office of Sport has delivered the Award under licence in New South Wales.

The Duke of Ed Award is the world’s leading youth development program, enabling young people to become empowered through volunteering/community service, physical activity, new life skills and adventure/travel. It’s an opportunity for young volunteers to become “World Ready”, build resilience and upskill for future career and study opportunities. Last year more than 13,500 young people registered to participate in the Award.

Speak to your club to see if they are a provider of this award, or visit the Duke of Ed website to find an Award unit near you.

For more information about involving Youth visit:

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Contact the SLSNSW Team.

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