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Surf Life Saving clubs across NSW are being encouraged to apply for Surf Club Facility Program grants announced by Deputy Premier of NSW, John Barilaro and Acting Minister for Sport, Geoff Lee, earlier this week.

This program is part of the NSW Government’s four-year commitment to assist with funding the development of local Surf Life Saving Clubs. This is the third year of the program, which has seen Surf Life Saving Clubs being funded over $12 million to create fit-for-purpose facilities to increase participation, access and safety on our NSW beaches

In recent years the Surf Club Facility Program has supported the installation of disabled access ramps at Maroubra SLSC, clubhouse renovations at Warilla-Barrack Point SLSC and the refurbishment of Cudgen Headland SLSC.

The 2019/20 program will continue to support surf clubs and local communities with a focus on areas affected by severe drought and the 2019/20 bushfires within NSW.

Deputy Premier and Minister responsible for Disaster Recovery John Barilaro said Surf Life Saving clubs are vital community hubs.

“During the recent bushfires, Surf Life Saving clubs up and down our coastline became places of refuge, as thousands were evacuated,” said Mr Barilaro.

“These clubs and the amazing volunteers who run them don’t just save people from drowning, they perform a vital role in helping our community in times of crisis,” he said.

Surf Life Saving clubs in bushfire and drought affected areas across NSW will be prioritised for assistance, as applications open this week for $4 million of funding.

Acting Minister for Sport Geoff Lee said grants of $30,000 to $350,000 were available from the NSW Government.

“Surf clubs are a crucial part of our society and we need to make sure we protect and upgrade their facilities to keep them modern and versatile,” said Mr Lee.

“When bushfires or drought affect a community, the surf club is often the focal point which unites people and gives them a safe place to share their stories in hard times.

“The benefits of surf clubs extend far beyond the beach so it is important we help upgrade these facilities so they continue to play their important role for future generations.”

President of Surf Life Saving NSW George Shales said ensuring rescue facilities across NSW remained safe, accessible and secure was more of a priority than ever as the role of Surf Life Saving clubs evolved.

“Surf Life Saving Clubs are home base for our volunteers and places of refuge for members of the community at times of crisis. This investment allows significant upgrades to improve access for our 75,000 volunteers and for the wider community,” Mr Shales said.

“With 129 clubs across the state, volunteer surf lifesavers performed 3,800 rescues, 197,000 preventative actions and 10,000 first aid treatments last year.

“During the recent bushfires on the NSW Far South Coast, our surf clubs became emergency evacuation centres for over 7,000 people – providing food, shelter and first-aid treatment,” Mr Shales concluded.

All NSW Surf Life Saving clubs are encouraged to apply.

Applications close: 31 March 2020

For more details download the NSW Office of Sport Surf Club Facility Program 2019-2020 Memo.

Wednesday 26 February 2020