INDEPENDENT NEWS

Lion Foundation celebrates Surf Life Saving

Published: Mon 8 Dec 2008 02:24 PM
Media release
8 December 2008
The Lion Foundation celebrates Surf Life Saving and Christmas in Auckland
The Lion Foundation is celebrating one of its long term grant recipients and benefactor of this year’s Auckland Christmas in the Park – Surf Life Saving New Zealand.
Operating for over 20 years and one of the country’s most widely respected community trusts, The Lion Foundation has been supporting Surf Life Saving for 15 years, and is further showing its commitment by supporting Christmas in the Park.
The trust’s latest national grant to Surf Life Saving of $200,000 to assist with operational costs and equipment is also being presented in December.
The Lion Foundation Chief Executive Officer Phil Holden says the charitable trust is proud to encourage enjoyment and safety at New Zealand’s favourite playground – the beach.
“Kiwis love the beach and Surf Life Saving is committed to making New Zealand’s beaches as safe as possible through its beach patrols and various programmes.”
Mr Holden adds: “The Lion Foundation is proud to support Surf Life Saving and we particularly recognise their outstanding services with summer here and the upcoming festive and holiday season.”
Surf Life Saving New Zealand is well known for its beach patrol services along the country’s coastline. Less in the spotlight are the annual education programmes more than 60,000 primary aged children attend every year, and the skilled volunteers and specialised equipment provided to emergency services including Police, the Fire Service and Civil Defence.
“Without The Lion Foundation’s grants, we would struggle to provide the depth of service we do – services that saved 1,681 lives last year, enabled 272 missing person searches and treated 1,618 people for first aid and injuries,” says John O’Connell, Surf Life Saving New Zealand Business Manager.
“The Lion Foundation is here for good and their support allows us to make a difference in so many communities around the country.”
Surf Life Saving hopes to raise more than $100,000 at the Auckland and Christchurch Christmas in the Parks. Auckland’s Christmas in the Park takes place in Auckland Domain on Saturday 13 December.
ENDS
Important beach safety tips:
Remember - when you’re at the beach this summer - make sure you stick to the basic safety rules:
Swim between the flags:
At a patrolled beach Surf Lifeguards have checked the conditions and put the red and yellow flags in the safest place to swim or play.
Always be aware around moving water:
Moving water is always a risk whether it’s at a surf beach or not. Water is pushed into the beach by waves and has to find a way back; the drag can catch people unaware even in relatively shallow water.
Be smart around rocks:
Whether fishing or exploring at the beach, rocky outcrops can be very dangerous in large surf. Don’t think the water will wash around you as moving water is always powerful. Never stand on a rock outcrop that is wet - a sure sign waves will be washing over it. Always face the sea, never turn your back to it, and always have a clear escape path to safe ground.
Be sun smart:
Remember to apply sunscreen before you go out into the sun and reapply every hour after you have been in the water.
Never swim or surf alone:
When you head into the water, you need to make sure that you have someone with you so you can help each other keep safe in the surf.

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