Northern Beaches Surf Life Saving Clubs (SLSCs) are being urged to apply for a share of over $5m in funding.

The NSW Government has allocated $5.25m for the 2023/2024 round of the Surf Club Facility Program. SLSCs can apply for up to $1m of funding for major projects, or $100k for smaller projects.

Surf lifesaving flags at the beach

Specific projects called out for consideration of the grant funding include:

  • New and upgraded provision of universally designed change rooms and/or shower, toilets and parent and child change areas
  • Environmental and operational sustainable initiatives that support water, energy and financial sustainability. For example, solar panels and/or batteries, rainwater tanks for reuse in toilets or LED lighting.
  • Digital technology uplift projects, including installation of WIFI, keyless entry, increased automation and other innovative smart technologies
  • Projects that improve the storage, security and safety capability of surf clubs. For example, extension or construction of board storage room, bushfire protection measures on the facility, new roller or access doors.
  • Fixed and non-fixed items that are part of a larger capital improvement project scope, such as portable storage racks for rescue boards or beach access mats for wheelchairs
  • Projects that improve safety on the beach. For example, lifeguard surveillance rooms or improvements to beach access for rescue and patrol vehicles.
James Griffin

Member for Manly James Griffin (image above) said that surf clubs provide critical protection for everyone who visits the beach, not just locals.

“We already know we are in for a hot spring and summer, and it is critical our Surf Life Saving Clubs are prepared to protect the influx of beachgoers in the coming months.

“Our local volunteer surf lifesavers are incredibly dedicated and committed to keeping our community safe and any support we can give them is extremely important. I would encourage Manly electorate clubs to apply,” said Mr Griffin.

2023 Pittwater Community Service Awards

Member for Pittwater Rory Amon (image above) agreed, urging local clubs to take advantage of the funding program before it comes to an end.

“Pittwater’s twelve Surf Life Saving Clubs are the heart of our beachside community, with more SLSCs than any other electorate. This program is about making sure those clubs have the resources they need, including facilities that are modern, accessible and fit-for-purpose.

“This funding will continue to build on the enormous investment made by the former Liberal and Nationals Government, so I encourage all Pittwater clubs to apply,” echoed Mr Amon.

Peter Agnew, Jihad Dib, Steven Pearce

NSW Minister for Emergency Services Jihad Dib (image above, centre) said the NSW Government was proud to support Surf Life Saving NSW (SLSNSW) and the thousands of volunteers.

“Rain, hail or shine, surf lifesavers never waver in their commitment to protecting the community and the NSW Government will continue to support them in the incredible work they do.

“With more people enjoying our beautiful beaches during the warmer months, we are investing in these facility upgrades to support our dedicated life-saving volunteers,” said Minister Dib.

President of SLSNSW Peter Agnew (image above, left) welcomed the additional funding, adding it was necessary to maintain investment to keep the community safe.

“We are pleased to see the NSW Government acknowledge and support the amazing contribution made by our volunteer lifesavers and surf clubs in NSW.

“Our lifesavers and nippers deserve safe, secure facilities in which to train and store vital rescue equipment, as well as somewhere accessible which welcomes the community in to be part of our great and iconic movement,” said Mr Agnew.

Surf Life Saving NSW Mona Vale patrol with flags up

Applications can be made for various funding streams, with Category 1 for facility improvements under $100k and Categories 2 and 3 for larger construction projects up to and above $500k.

Applications for Category 1 close Monday, 11 December 2023. Applications for Categories 2 and 3 close Wednesday, 31 January 2024.

For more information and to apply, visit the Surf Club Facility Program on the NSW Government Office of Sport website.

Images: Northern Beaches Advocate

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