Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Newcastle issues call for more lifeguards

City of Newcastle Council is calling for new high school-aged trainee lifeguards to patrol Newcastle’s iconic beaches and baths this summer.

For a third year running, the Council is investing in upskilling Hunter Surf Lifesavers under the Trainee Lifeguard program.

Newcastle Lord Mayor, Nuatali Nelmes said it was important the Council continued to support valuable career experiences and enhance surf lifesaving skills across diverse cohorts.

“Newcastle beaches attract more than one million swimmers and sun-seekers to our picturesque coastline each year, so it is vital we invest in keeping our visitors safe,” Lord Mayor Nelmes said.

“Our Trainee Lifeguard Program offers successful applicants three weekday shifts of up to 24 hours per week throughout the summer school holidays, and invaluable mentorship from our professional lifeguards.

“The six-week program offers trainees the ability to shadow our lifeguards, supporting the wellbeing and safety of the community so they can safely enjoy the City’s beaches and ocean baths.”

Since Council launched the program in 2021, the traineeship has helped kickstart the careers of nine lifeguards, who are now regularly patrolling our beaches during the summer months.

Lily Forbes, who undertook the traineeship in 2021/22 and commenced working as a casual lifeguard for City of Newcastle last season, said the program provided her with great insight and experience into being a beach lifeguard.

“The traineeship allowed me to learn the ins and outs of the job from the most experienced lifeguards. It offered me first aid qualifications, knowledge of beach geography and strengthened my interpersonal skills,” Ms Forbes said.

“I would encourage school-aged individuals to apply for this opportunity. Being a lifeguard is exciting, every day is unique, the environment is friendly and supportive, it’s flexible around studies and you get to spend the summer on Newcastle beaches.”

City of Newcastle lifeguard, Dan Collins said the program was the perfect way to foster and develop new lifeguards here in Newcastle.

“Working alongside lifeguards, trainees utilise skills in customer experience, problem solving and team work to keep our community safe. The traineeship is an incredible opportunity for young people to gain valuable skills in a supported environment for a career in lifeguarding or any other industry they may work in later in life,” Mr Collins said.

“The opportunity to have these trainees as part of our team and see their development across the six-week program is awesome. To see trainees return as team members in the following years goes to show how effective this traineeship is in developing lifeguards here in Newcastle.”

Applications close on Sunday 5 November, with successful trainees beginning the program on 18 December.

Visit City of Newcastle’s Employment Opportunities webpage for more information.

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