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TSB’s support of SLNZ clubs swells above $500,000

Omanu Beach Surf Life Saving Club. Photo. Monica McEwan.

With more Kiwis holidaying at home now, preparation for bumper crowds on the beach this summer has never been more important.

To help Surf Life Saving Clubs be rescue ready, TSB is again supporting regions with $100,000 in annual grants.

Three Bay of Plenty clubs will be receiving grants this summer.

Maketu are receiving $12,752 for boards for their junior members, Wainui will receive $8000 to develop their junior surf programme and keep it accessible across their wider community.

Omanu will receive $6000 to purchase two new rescue boards.

In addition to TSB’s national partnership with Surf Life Saving New Zealand, this brings TSB’s five-year investment in supporting local clubs to keep Kiwis safe on our beaches, to over half a million dollars.

TSB CEO Donna Cooper says the TSB team is very proud to have provided $500,000 since 2016 to support regional surf life saving clubs around Aotearoa.

“We’re so lucky in Aotearoa that 90% of us live within 40 minutes of our local beach, but that’s a lot of New Zealanders counting on our volunteer surf lifeguards to keep us safe.

“Yet our volunteer based clubs are largely reliant on the generosity of the community to literally save lives.

“So as a New Zealand owned bank that’s part of your community, we’re proud to put our profit to purpose to support this important work.”

This year $100,000 in TSB grants will fund several new surf rescue innovations. In New Brighton Christchurch, beach surveillance technology digitally counts the number of beachgoers, helping track crowd numbers and monitor changing beach conditions.

For Whanganui Surf Life Saving Club and Kotuku Surf Life Saving Club on the West Coast, the grants will fund new VHF radio tracking technology to provide additional safety and communications to lifeguards on the water.

Other TSB grants will support clubs to purchase rescue boards and tubes, All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs), patrol towers, storage solutions and sunshades, so their volunteer teams are prepped for keeping our communities safe this summer.

Surf Life Saving NZ’s CEO, Paul Dalton advised the TSB grants provide vital support to clubs.

“We are incredibly grateful to our major partner TSB for providing their annual grants schemes for our surf lifesaving clubs. With the constant need to replace frontline equipment, funding is not readily available or accessible to support the more innovative surf lifesaving projects or obtain rescue equipment for training our junior surf members.

“The TSB grants are helping us future proof surf lifesaving by providing the gear for our next generation of lifeguards and giving our clubs the ability to explore new approaches in keeping Kiwis safer on Aotearoa’s beaches.”

Full list of grants:

Whanganui – Tracking VHF Radios and additional technology - $12,672

The grant will support Whanganui SLSC to upgrade its tracking VHF radios and associated technology so its call-out squad and management staff can more easily connect with lifeguards on the front line using their smartphones. This is especially important as incidents around water can escalate very quickly and need quick responses.

New Brighton (Christchurch) – Beach Surveillance Technology - $5,000

The TSB grant will fund new beach surveillance technology which digitally counts the number of beachgoers. This technology will operate 24 hours a day and will be used to provide data to evaluate when the best time to patrol is. It can track crowd numbers and also monitor changing beach conditions.

Brighton (Dunedin) – ATV - $10,000

Due to the nature of the Brighton beach, a side-by-side ATV is needed to tow the IRB to and from the water. The TSB grant will be used to fund this vital asset for the club.

Maketu (Bay of Plenty) – Junior Surf Training – $12,752

The TSB grant will fund 15 soft-top cadet boards for the junior surf members at Maketu to train their next generation of lifeguards.

Kotuku (West Coast) – Tracking VHF Radios - $4258

The TSB grant will fund new VHF radio tracking technology to provide additional safety and comms to lifeguards on the water.

Mairangi Bay (Auckland) – New gear storage containers - $15,000

The Mairangi Bay SLSC needs to relocate from the existing boatshed and containers to allow Watercare to start a major upgrade of the Wastewater Pump Station. This grant will enable them to purchase new containers and bollards to operate from during this time.

Bethells Beach (Auckland) – Junior Surf Boards - $8000

The Bethells SLSC will use the TSB grant to purchase new boards for their Junior Surf programme which will allow their older boards to be used in future lifeguard development and competitions for Junior Surf members.

Wainui (Gisborne) – Junior Surf Training Boards - $8000

To support the development of the local Junior Surf programme, the TSB grant will be used to purchase training boards for all the keen new members which will help keep the programme accessible to the wider community.

North Beach (Christchurch) – Junior Surf - $8000

At North Beach the grant will fund a sun shelter and new rescue boards needed to train new and existing junior members becoming lifeguards over the next few years.

Omanu (Tauranga) – Rescue Boards - $6000

Omanu club will bolster their transportable rescue equipment with the addition of two new rescue boards funded by the TSB grant.

Titahi Bay (Wellington) – Portable Patrol Tower - $5000

The TSB grant will fund a portable patrol tower to extend patrolling to a dangerous rip at the far end of beach and give the lifeguards some protection from the elements.

Onemana (Coromandel) – Rescue Board and Tubes - $5000

The TSB grant will be used to update the rescue boards and tubes, allowing the old equipment to be used for training purposes.

Orewa (Auckland) – Patrol Sunshade - $2460

The TSB grant will fund a pop-up gazebo to protect lifeguards from the sun. This will enable the Orewa club to utilise their viewing platform during patrols, giving them visibility of the entire beach.

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