“We would like to acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land and seas on which we deliver our life saving services. We pay our respect to Elders past, present and emerging.”
We have come to the end of our 2021/22 season - what a year it has been and what a very different world we are now operating in!

Thank you to the amazing tenacity, resourcefulness and commitment to our movement that has been shown by all of you and our clubs this year – in our many areas of surf life saving.  Everything you do, and every way you contribute is appreciated and makes a difference.  Keep up the great work!
It is so exciting to reintroduce our Branch newsletter; to inform and educate on the many happening at a Branch level. 

Some of the big highlights for me this season have been:
  • Our 913 Retained Members and our 233 New Members – You!
  • A successful patrol season to deliver on our vision of Zero Preventable deaths in Qld Public Waterways – including our 380 Bronze Medallion Award Holders
  • The number of new award holders including Surf Rescue Certificates, Bronze Medallion, First Aid, IRB Drivers and Crew, Coaches, Officials, ART with the guidance and training of our amazing Trainers and Assessors.
  • Engaging and accessible nippers programs delivered across 5 clubs of NQ Branch to 378 junior members – that’s 378 juniors learning about service, aquatic safety, fun, friends and fitness in NQ!
  • The progressive and action focused direction of our current branch board of Directors to make decisions and implementing actions to improve outcomes for all members and clubs
  • New AV Equipment installed in the NQB office to assist with Education, Communication and connectivity with our members and clubs
  • A fantastic Surf Sports Season and Carnivals across multi disciplines of Beach Carnivals, Pool Rescue Carnivals, Surf Rescue Championships and Boats to improve member skills, fitness and fun,
  • The success of North Aussies with over 500 competitors – and a continuation of the Cairns SLSC dominance in the pointscore.
I would like to acknowledge the contribution of your current NQB Board of Directors, their committees.  The time, passion and commitment shown by them, and current members of the North Queensland Board and Council, to collectively serve the members of the branch and make our movement stronger, is amazing– thank you all.

Deputy President – Jemima Eveans
Director of Administration – Scott Pearson
Director of Finance - Bob Masters
Director of Lifesaving – Gary Williams
Director of Juniors – Jenny Jones
Director of Youth and Membership – Jessie Witt
Director of Surf Sports – Alex Rogers
It is important for us to pause, reflect and celebrate all the amazing things we do in surf life saving.  I wish you all a great summer break – and for those who participate in our southern surf lifesaving season activities – enjoy.
See you on the Beach
Rachael Wynberg
Lifesaving News

2021 is wrapped up and done for NQ Patrolling duties.

A big thank you to all the educators our dedicated trainers, assessors and mentors that progressed the award structure throughout the year.  Without them we could not meet our patrolling commitments.  Congratulations to all the Award winners and those nominated.  It is a true reflection of the work you not only do in the Front of House but also the unseen back of house components to ensure the training and education sessions run smoothly and deliver effectively, as well as the ongoing upskilling requirements to maintaining your own skills to improve the delivery for all.

Awards and qualifications are always onerous having trialed improving the delivery with implementing better use of technology.  This has been a challenge for all of us in some way, whether on the receiving end or at the delivery stage, it is a credit to the resilience of all our branch trainers and members to adapt to this everchanging environment.

To the Club Patrolling it is a credit to your club and the Branch in the trying times to field compliant patrols each weekend Branch rostered patrols hours across the five clubs accumulating 10263 hours with an additional 724 volunteer hours.  This does not include water safety hours.

I would like to thank all those who actively participated in forums to improve our patrolling environment.    Without this input nothing improves and nothing gets better or indeed confirms we are doing it right in the first place.  Please accept that any changes that we identify are progressed slowly, this is because of a number of reasons.  Least of all, we are working and volunteering in an organisation that has processes and policies to comply with but it does not mean that it will not be considered change.

Update from Recent LSC meeting to look forward to:
  • Establishing and incorporating Drone Operations whilst on patrol into suitable Clubs (i.e. not located in restricted airspace regions)
  • Embedding RWC into Patrol Operations LSC is developing an application proforma/agreement for clubs to completed to apply to have a RWC to compliment patrol responsibilities
  • Demonstration and commitment of a high standard and professionalism of SLSQ in providing Water Safety at IM 2021
  • State award winner in the Lifesaving discipline SLSQ Trainer of the Year Annabel Grant
  • Successful turnout for the NQB Surf Rescue Champs thank you to Etty Bay SLSC for hosting
  • Addressing training schedule conflicts when COVID lockdown impacted region
  • Managing Branch equipment an additional task which is resource intensive
  • Missing out competing at Cairns IM 70.3
  • Wishing everyone a great off season and looking forward to a fantastic 2022
Gary Williams
Our 2021/2022 season has seen our junior membership only very slightly down on last, which is a true testament to the efforts put in by all concerned last season.    
We were thankfully again able to train in all areas of lifesaving from CPR to board rescue, beach flags to tube races and much, much more, with minimal interruption.  
Surf carnivals were again on the agenda and well attended, as to were the Pool Rescue carnivals and the Surf Rescue Championships.
Our Junior Activities Board meet monthly to stay in touch, keep informed and bounce ideas around.
Congratulations and welcome to our new SRC holders, who now join our patrolling families on the beach helping to keep our bathing public safe.  New junior awards in 2021 to date are:
  • 19 SRC 
  • 268 Surf Education Awards 
  • 7 NAA (Nipper Adult Assistant) 
  • 6 JAAO (Junior Activities Accreditation Officer) 
Thank you to all who support the junior movement in the NQ Branch:- from patrolling members (for without a patrol on the beach, there would be no nipper activities), water-safety, IRB drivers and crew, trainers & assessors, officials, coaches, canteen and BBQ coordinators and helpers, raffle ticket sellers, any & all that do admin...… Just to name a few.
Thank you to all our juniors (and their families) for your support and coordination with water-safety and IRB duties not only on Nipper Sunday’s, but also at carnivals (from Port Douglas to Mackay) and triathlon events across the north.  Whilst many of our juniors have concluded their season, our YST members are still in training.  We wish them all the best for the Qld Youth State Championships being held at Alexandra Headlands in late February.

Jenny Jones
Dear Club members,

Here are some highlights from 2021.

NQB IRB Driver & Crew, trail joint offseason training at Tinaroo Dam 20-21 Feb, engagement of 35 members across 5 clubs, with 3 SME’s attending from SEQ.  Combined financial support from Branch ($1,750) and the SLSQ Lifesaving ($1,266.76) address strategic patrol gaps pre-season.  Training continued at clubs and assessments were completed in the ocean.

The Achilles IRB trials completed with SLSA.  SLSQ provided NQB with replacement Zodiac IRB’s therefore NQB released the improved Achilles IRB’s to SLSQ for redistribution.

SLSQ new Marine Stinger Risk Management Document released pre-NQ season.

MEAL (Membership, Education, Administration, Leadership) launched in NQ for preseason forums across all aspects of club life.  A workshop attended by 11 SLSQ staff, 29 club members across 5 clubs. 

The rollout of new iPads in NQ for start of season, PCs inducted to the new LIMSOC.

SLSQ, NQ Branch premises investment into Audio Visual - training & board rooms. SLSQ contributing 50%. NQ Branch investment into a PA system for the Beach Carnivals.

Drone Course in North Queensland completed 14/2/21.

RPAS sites in North Queensland Drone Surveillance for DAF – Shark Smart Program. Alma bay & Palm Cove Federal funding until Oct 2021.  Launch of the SLSQ. Joint Venture with SLSQ and Ripper Corp in May.

Surf Life Saving Queensland’s Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter landing in Mackay, Townsville, Cairns, Port Douglas – June.  Community & member engagement for the promotion of SLS at schools, public spaces and Cairns Ironman.

North Queensland Clubs providing a water safety service for the Ironman Cairns swim 6 June (3000 swimmers). Water Safety collaboration across five clubs, lifeguards and key stakeholders. Large scale engagement, 83 members. Two major rescues, 14 minor rescues.  Resources included 9 IRB’s, 1 Jetski, 42 boards Financially beneficial to the NQ region $15,500.00.  The SLSQ Rescue Helicopter flight over the event.
COVID-19 vaccine pop-up clinics held at QLD Surf Life Saving Clubs, including Palm Cove and Port Douglas in October “Be a Lifesaver get a Jab”.

SLSQ considered all options and following a robust risk management assessment, the Board reached a position that ALL members of Surf Life Saving Queensland that are 16 years of age and over are required to be fully vaccinated by 31 March 2022.

The Community Awareness team delivered the Little Lifesavers program in December to 27 kids at the Cairns Lagoon. A second program is planned for January 2022 in Port Douglas.

Merry Xmas, have a great summer break.

Jen Rees
The 2021 SLSQ Conference has been postponed to August 20th - 21st 2022 at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The conference aims to provide SLSQ members with relevant and beneficial information, latest initiatives and ideas across a variety of topics in preparation for the upcoming patrol season.  

The conference is open to all Surf Life Saving members within Queensland.  It is strongly recommended that those in leadership and committee roles with the organisation attend.
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