In Nauru, learning water safety skills from an early age is key and local John Short started the Nauru Surf Club and Nauruan Nippers to teach others surf lifesaving skills.
John runs the Nauruan Nippers weekly, and kids from six to 16 attend to learn skills like surf rescue and CPR.
“The kids are so involved and keen. They learn skills that are lifelong and directly related to saving lives,” John says.
Recently, the Palm Beach Surf Lifesaving Club on the Gold Coast in Australia purchased new surf rescue boards.
David Carroll is a gear steward with the club and says he found the Nauru Surf Club online and saw photos of the kids learning surf skills.
“It looked like a fantastic opportunity to repurpose the boards, so rather than having them sit in our shed and racks we thought here’s something who can benefit from having them,” David says.
The Club President approved the donation of the boards and CPR mannequins, and Nauru Airlines offered to freight them to Nauru free of charge.
The surf rescue boards arrived in Nauru and the kids gleefully opened them with shrieks of excitement.
Then, it was straight down to the beach to put them to good use in the water!
John Short says it is amazing for the club to have surf rescue gear like this as it really assists with teaching water safety skills.
“The rescue boards allow us to expand our program to include board rescues, tandem board paddle and will play a major role in club competition events,” John says.
John says the current Nippers are future life guards in the making and he is proud that if they choose to become life guards, they will enter with knowledge and operational understanding of the senior life guards.
David agrees that water safety should be a skill everyone is taught and is happy to have been able to assist the Nauru surf club.
“It was a great opportunity to create a tie,” David says.
“In the surf lifesaving community, it’s all about helping each other and being there to help the community, so it’s certainly a great way to help those in Nauru in a small way.”
Photo supplied. Caption: Children playing in the surf on new surf rescue boards