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SeaLink sponsors beach education program

Posted by SLSNR Admin on Monday, 7 January 2019

Hundreds of youngsters swimming at Waiheke Island’s famous beaches this summer will be more beach aware thanks to Surf Life Saving Northern Region and first-time sponsor, SeaLink.

Hauraki Gulf ferry operator SeaLink is supporting Surf Life Saving Northern Region’s City Nippers programme on Waiheke Island this January by transporting surf lifeguard educators and their equipment to and from the island.

The City Nippers education programme builds confidence in the water, surf safety and general beach awareness for children aged 5 to 11. Each course is six hours over three days.

Clare Cotter, Community Education Manager for Surf Life Saving Northern Region, says the SeaLink sponsorship was critical for the organisation to be able to run three weeks of courses on the island.

“Educating primary school-aged children on Waiheke about water and surf safety is important as the island does not have paid or volunteer beach patrols. Water safety education has been a concern on the island for a number of years,” she says.

Waiheke is a relatively safe swimming location, but the beaches can have strong rips, which can catch holidaymakers unaware.

Abby Kurtini, from ‘Out There’ Surf on Waiheke Island, has been a champion of surf lifesaving courses. She says being water-wise and having fun in the water is such an important part of our way of life and it helps builds the confidence of kids.

“We have loved seeing the positive response from the community to the lifesaving courses run over the last two years. It is something that we are all hoping will become a permanent feature on the Island, which, with the help from sponsorship from SeaLink is looking like a real possibility. We would also like to say a big thank you to the team at Surf Life Saving Northern Region for supporting this great cause,” said Abby.

Surf lifeguards will deliver the two-hour programme at Oneroa Beach twice a day and three days a week on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Places are limited to 30 per class and, as the programme was fully booked last summer, parents are encouraged to register early to secure a place.

To register go to

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