$10,000 to fix Otaki surf club roof
With a leaky club roof and money hard to come by, Otaki Surf Lifesaving Club were over the moon when they heard they had won $10,000 from a pool of $459,050 raised through BP’s Every Litre Counts (SLSNZ) month long campaign earlier this year.
The money, which saw a portion of every litre of fuel sold at BP sites nationwide, will allow Surf Life Saving New Zealand and its 74 surf clubs (18,642 member) to fund lifeguard and first aid training, purchase equipment, and cover some of their running costs.
The $10,000 directed to the Otaki Surf Lifesaving Club will be used to fix their gear club roof which regularly leaks and is where their IRBs are stored, making it a critical and timesensitive task.
“It is an incredibly generous donation and will form the basis of a fund to replace the gear shed roof which is essential maintenance,” Otaki Surf Lifesaving Club chairman Graeme Lundie said.
“BP’s ongoing support through campaigns such as Every Cent Counts is central to us being able to keep our essential gear running and protected so that we can provide ongoing lifesaving services to the Otaki Beach.
“The roof is 31 years old and has been resealed completely once over the years and been patched on four separate occasions, it is also accessible from some areas and we frequently have kids running over it which causes more damage.
“It leaks in several places and the infrastructure is starting to deteriorate. Also it is becoming a security risk as there are places it could be levered off the walls in some areas.”
The Every Litre Counts campaign marked 50 years since BP began its support of Surf Life Saving New Zealand in 1968, believed to be New Zealand’s longest unbroken corporate partnership.
“We are so proud to partner with a charity which saves thousands of lives on New Zealand beaches each year,” BP New Zealand managing director Debi Boffa said.
“Fifty years is a significant milestone and Every Litre Counts was our way to say thank you for having our backs.
“The response from the New Zealand public who took part in the campaign was incredible and we couldn’t have done it without them.”
In the last 50 years, more than 55,000 lives have been saved with 22,000 of those rescues conducted using a BP Inflatable Rescue Boat (IRB).
Last summer alone, BP IRBs helped 5247 volunteer lifeguards conduct 333 searches, 1058 rescues and 2358 assists at beaches across New Zealand.
“Our association with BP started in the wake of the Wahine tragedy and since then has become invaluable to us,” Surf Life Saving New Zealand chief executive Paul Dalton said.
“Our funding sources are largely short term and determined year-to-year, which puts us at a huge risk.
“We break even at best. We start each new year with no money and need to find $9 to $10 million just to run our organisation and keep New Zealand beaches safe.
“If we can begin the summer with money from a partner like BP, that makes such a difference. We may have our biggest profile in summer, but most of our work is happening now, during the winter months.
“We’re training 1000 new lifeguards each year, replacing and repairing equipment, fundraising and planning for the upcoming summer months.
“The donation couldn’t have come at a better time.
“To the people of New Zealand who have taken part in the Every Litre Counts campaign I’d like to say a huge thanks.
“It might not seem a lot at the time, but every little amount collectively adds up to a huge amount.
“It’s certainly going to make our beaches safer in the coming years.”
Otaki Surf Lifesaving Club.