Life­savers un­der con­struc­tion

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - @SCHOOL -

STU­DENTS at Port Dou­glas State School have spent four weeks learn­ing how to be lit­tle life­savers, thanks to the great READY. SET. RESCUE. pro­gram of­fered through Sport­ing Schools, which is Aus­tralia’s largest school based sports par­tic­i­pa­tion pro­gram that helps chil­dren fos­ter a life­long in­ter­est in sport.

Hav­ing been in­volved with Sport­ing Schools be­fore, pre­vi­ously par­tic­i­pat­ing in a TRYs­tars triathalon pro­gram, Port Dou­glas SS were ea­ger to try a dif­fer­ent sport to chal­lenge the stu­dents.

In a true com­mu­nity ef­fort, Rob David­son, mem­ber­ship and sport devel­op­ment co­or­di­na­tor with Surf Life Sav­ing Queens­land got the waves rolling, so to speak, and used his experience as a coach to train Port Dou­glas Surf Life Sav­ing Club mem­ber Irene Cats to lead and de­liver the pro­gram.

Port Dou­glas chose a pack­age that was a lit­tle dif­fer­ent to the usual pro­gram of­fered. Rather than run­ning the pro­gram over ten weeks, Port Dou­glas chose to run the pro­gram over four weeks, with four 60 minute ses­sions each day.

Each group of stu­dents par­tic­i­pated in Surf sport skills fo­cus­ing on: body board­ing; wad­ing; dol­phin-div­ing; beach sprint starts; and beach flag starts.

Rob David­son said stu­dents ar­rived lively with ex­cite­ment.

“Once we went through the in­tro­duc­tions and talked about surf live sav­ing, the stu­dents took to the ac­tiv­i­ties with en­thu­si­asm, gen­uine in­ter­est and had plenty of fun,” Rob said.

“But it wasn’t just the stu­dents that en­joyed the ses­sions, the feed­back from each of the at­tend­ing teacher was re­ward­ing,” he said.

Ben­jamin Gaske, prin­ci­pal at Port Dou­glas, was both thrilled and sur­prised at how in­ter­ested and en­gaged it got the stu­dents.

“All the stu­dents are tak­ing part in the pro­gram re­ally look for­ward to it each week,” Ben­jamin said.

Once the four week pro­gram is fin­ished at the school, the stu­dents then may choose to en­gage fur­ther with the Port Dou­glas Surf Life Sav­ing Club.

One stu­dent has al­ready reg­is­tered with the clubs ex­ist­ing weekly ju­nior ac­tiv­i­ties pro­gram as a re­sult of these ses­sions.

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