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The Surf Life Saving NSW Community Education team has been working hard to spread the message of beach safety to as many people as possible, and in the lead-up to Do Something Day, with a Western Sydney audience the latest to benefit from this important message.

Last Wednesday, Club Marconi in Sydney’s West became the setting for a Family Fun Day for more than 50 people driven by a desire to learn more about beach safety.

The venue was chosen specifically because of its geographic location in the heartland of Western Sydney which sadly is a blackspot area for coastal drownings. In a sobering statistic, over the last decade nearly 100 people who call the region home have drowned whilst visiting the coast.

SLSNSW has been working hard to address these alarming numbers in recent years by working with schools and conducting community based programs to help spread safety messages before the population reaches the most at risk age; typically males aged between 15-34.

The popular Wet ‘n’ Wild Sydney Community Nippers program will soon enter its fifth season and has proved to be a worthwhile program that mirrors the experience of their peers for the participants who live far away from the coast.

A key part of the strategy is to encourage conversations as difficult as they may be and Wednesday’s presentation formed a key part of this. The sessions were designed to provide a brief overview and introduction to some of the challenges of the ocean and beach environment in a relatable and accessible manner.

Some of the key topics discussed throughout the program include the key beach safety messages of knowing your environment, swimming at a patrolled location, and the role of lifesavers and lifeguards. Participants were also taught about the importance of identifying rip currents, the signs they should look out for, and how to escape from them if they do get into difficulty.

While the sessions was based around these important beach safety messages, there was the opportunity for fun as well with a giant blow-up slide entertaining the young (and young at heart) members of the audience, whilst the presence of the Nova 96.9 Casanovas added more flair and games for attendees.

“Pleasingly many of those who came along were families and holding it in the school holidays is an opportune time to talk to people from across Western Sydney about the dangers of the ocean before the summer season,” said SLSNSW Partnerships Coordinator Christopher O’Rorke.

The Community Fun Day continues Club Marconi’s commitment to giving back to the local community. In the 2018 financial year, Club Maroni has contributed $1,160,848 to various community groups and charitable organisations.

“It was a really enjoyable day and we are grateful for the support of Your Local Club, Club Marconi and our volunteers who helped make the sessions such a success,” he said.

Do Something Day which takes place today (July 25) is Australia’s biggest celebration of giving back. The long running initiative is supported by News Local and Your Local Club, and encourages everyone to be inspired to DoSomething by volunteering, making a donation or spreading some kindness.


Wednesday 25 July 2018