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History will be made this weekend when more than 350 Surf Life Saving leaders from around NSW gather in Sydney to set the future direction of the movement.

With the Minister for Emergency Services, the Hon Troy Grant MP addressing the delegates, the 2018 State Conference is the first forum of its type for many years and will bring together representatives from almost every surf club in the state, with those in leadership roles including presidents, training officers and club captains.

It will be a fantastic networking opportunity with all 11 branches and 109 of the state’s surf clubs attending, with the Lower North Coast a particular stand out with all five clubs in the branch being represented.

The underlying theme for the conference is “Member Centred. Community Focussed,” with member welfare and improving the experience of everyone involved in the movement a key priority for Surf Life Saving NSW ahead of another busy summer.

In a packed program a key highlight is the launch of the Surf Life Saving NSW Strategic Plan 2018-2021.

This plan outlines a focus on a number of key priorities to secure the future of lifesaving over the next three years, and is the result of an exhaustive consultation process across all levels of the organisation.

Delegates will have the opportunity to hear from experts and inspirational speakers on how to create an engaging culture which will attract and retain volunteers in the future, ensuring the relevance and sustainability of the organisation. In addition, member-focussed workshops will give delegates the chance to share experiences and exchange best-practice advice on a range of important topics, from attracting funding, to child protection and building an inclusive environment.

Other topics covered will include improving the mental health of lifesavers, an overview of the latest patrol innovations and how culture is the key to keeping an organisation agile and responsive to change.

A number of small clubs who have successfully turned their fortunes around in terms of growing membership and engagement will share their secrets with their fellow surf lifesavers. The session led by Tathra, Pambula and Camden Haven SLSCs is not to be missed as they discuss the unique challenges faced by smaller clubs and their ever-changing communities.

“It’s been a lot of hard work to get to this point but I’m convinced this gathering will be a unique and beneficial experience for our members,” said SLSNSW CEO Steven Pearce.

“I look forward to welcoming everyone to the event, and while I am sure that there will be plenty of robust discussion over the weekend, everyone will be working toward the same goal of securing a great future for the entire Surf Life Saving community.”

The 2018 NSW State Conference will be held at Novotel Brighton Le Sands on Saturday 28 – Sunday 29 July


Friday 27 July 2018