Flags up and Nippers to start at Hunter beaches thanks to Newcastle Permanent

Flags up and Nippers to start at Hunter beaches thanks to Newcastle Permanent

Red and yellow surf lifesaving flags are up on the weekends at Hunter beaches and Nippers is about to start thanks to support from Newcastle Permanent.

Hunter Surf Life Saving and the region’s 13 surf lifesaving clubs held a special raising of the flags ceremony at Merewether Surf Club recently to signal the start of weekend beach patrols.

Hunter Surf Life Saving President, Henry Scruton said summer is coming and volunteer lifesavers are ready to go.

“Thanks to Newcastle Permanent, we have the equipment, and our people are trained to help keep people safe in and out of the water,” Henry said.

One of those volunteers is Brendon Ryman. The 54-year-old Stockton resident has been a member of the Stockton Surf Life Saving Club for 13 years.

Brendon is the Hunter branch’s current Lifesaver of the Year and a duty officer and rescue watercraft operator with the branch’s Support Operations team. He’s also a trainer and assessor for future lifesavers and inflatable rescue boat crews and drivers.

Mark said because Newcastle Permanent is customer-owned, it looks to support the communities where its members live, work and play.

“Spending time at the beach is part of summer for so many people in our region, which is why we’ve been supporting Hunter Surf Life Saving for 42 years,” Mark said.

“Our volunteer local lifesavers save countless lives each year – they deserve our thanks and support.”

Last year Hunter branch’s 1,738 patrolling members completed almost 60,000 patrol hours. They rescued 123 people, gave 521 first-aid treatments and undertook more than 25,000 other preventative actions. In 105 years of our patrolling, no one has ever died while swimming between the flags at Hunter beaches.

Newcastle Permanent also supports the recruitment, training and retention of junior surf lifesavers, to ensure Surf Life Saving clubs have a pipeline of volunteers coming through. Thousands of Hunter children and parents will be back on Hunter beaches as Nippers gets underway. The iconic beach and water safety program for kids aged five to 13 will run most Sundays until the end of February.

Mark said Nippers is a vital community program that offers personal development skills for young people and saves countless lives.

He said Nippers gives kids skills to keep themselves and others to stay safe when at the beach such as being able to identify rips and rescuing someone in trouble.

“Nippers is also the recruitment and training ground for our future volunteer surf lifesavers who patrol our beaches to keep us safe every weekend.”

“At Newcastle Permanent we’re here for the community and Nippers benefits everyone in the community.”

“The young people I meet from Nippers’ programs are impressive and confident because it gives them leadership and teamwork skills.”

As well as program funding support, Newcastle Permanent supplies surf lifesaving clubs with mandatory Nippers rashies to make the program more affordable for families.


IMAGE | Hunter Junior SLS of the Year, Taj Horadam, Brendon Ryman and Mark Colless

Newcastle Permanent

As a complete retail financial services provider, Newcastle Permanent provides a genuine alternative to traditional banks for a range of financial services including the day to day needs of business banking members.

Besides an extensive network of branches and ATMs, Newcastle Permanent also offers comprehensive electronic banking services that allow their members to conveniently and efficiently conduct their financial business.

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