Grants improve safety at Rainbow Beach

Local families and tourists will be safer when going for a swim in the beautiful waters off Rainbow Beach, with Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Llew O’Brien announcing $14,788 in grants for the Rainbow Beach Surf Life Saving Club.

Mr O’Brien said the Club would receive $10,000 through the Liberal and Nationals Government’s Beach Safety Fund, and a further $4,788 through the Volunteer Grant Program to support their important work.

“These two grants will enable the Rainbow Beach Surf Life Saving Club to purchase resuscitation manikins for first-aid training; a defibrillator; fuel cells; patrol accessories and rescue tubes that will help them keep the region’s beaches safer all year around,” Mr O’Brien said.

“Rainbow Beach has more than 80 volunteer life savers who cover a massive area from Inskip Point to Double Island and Teewah, so this equipment will ensure they can continue to keep people safe from drowning.

“It comes at a critical time because, like many organisations across Australia, surf lifesaving clubs have been affected by a drop in fundraising revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic and border closures.”

Rainbow Beach Surf Life Saving Club president Shane Handy thanked Mr O’Brien for the assistance and said it would make a significant difference to the Club.

“Rainbow Beach and the Cooloola Coast have been busier than ever since COVID and we survive on these grants and fundraising, we really rely on them,” Mr Handy said.

“These grants mean that we can increase our ability to train new members and upskill our existing volunteers, which is critical not just for keeping people safe on the beach but also for other emergencies that they might attend such as car accidents.”

Minister for Sport, Richard Colbeck said the Government’s contribution to each of the 314 surf lifesaving clubs around Australia has assisted them in buying critical equipment from life jackets and rescue manikins though to inflatable rescue boats and defibrillators,

“Australia’s volunteer surf lifesavers spend their days responding to emergencies, preventing drownings and saving lives. They are critical to the Australian way of life,” Minister Colbeck said.

The Morrison Government provided an additional $3.1 million over two years from 2020-21 to double funding to SLSA for the Beach Safety Equipment Fund so each clubs was able to access $10,000 to purchase vital lifesaving equipment.

From 2018–19, the Government has provided $9.1 million to surf lifesaving clubs through the Beach Safety Equipment Fund.