Yeppoon Surf Life Saving Club wins prestigious award
SURF LIFE SAVING: Yeppoon Surf Life Saving Club has made a splash on Queensland's lifesaver stage after being named as the Wide Bay Branch's Club of the Year for the second year in a row.
The Capricorn Coast lifesaving club headed to the awards night at Tannum Sands last Saturday and walked away with more than one notable achievement.
The annual event recognises the efforts of the branch's eight clubs - Hervey Bay, Bundaberg, Elliott Heads, Moore Park, Agnes Water, Tannum Sands, Emu Park and Yeppoon.
Yeppoon club member Emily Glithero was named the under-18 Lifesaver of the Year and also received the Graham McKenzie OAM Bursary.
The bursary is awarded to members aged 17-25, in recognition of their contribution to patrols, education, lifesaving and training.
Former Junior Activities Co-ordinator and new Club President Sam Milfull was also recognised at the event as Volunteer of the Year and was also awarded the Andy Frizzell OAM Award for his contribution to junior activities.
Milfull said the awards reflected the club's re-energisation following a surge in membership numbers, and the contribution of all members.
In the past two seasons, membership has grown from 217 to 396 and junior members to 146 from 77.
"It's been really good engagement and people are really getting involved in the club's day-to-day activities,” Milfull said.
"That's an encouraging development.
"In the last two seasons we've almost doubled our membership and our junior membership has nearly doubled as well.
"It's testament to the great programs being offered, members getting involved and everyone making contributions.”
Milfull said the club had focused on maintaining a fun, inclusive atmosphere, as well as centring the junior program around "fun, family and friends”.
Former Club President Mark Gwynne was named Administrator of the Year and awarded the John Barlow Memorial Shield.
His leadership, and the efforts of the previous committee was also acknowledged as a key factor to the Club's success.
"He supported membership and provided opportunities for all of us to get involved,” Milfull said.
Such opportunities included his support for surf lifesaving training, first aid training and engagement with other southern clubs to co-ordinate camps and training opportunities in Yeppoon.
"Also, Mark and the committee helped us from a resource perspective, we've been in a position to buy new equipment including a near new surfboat and numerous boards,” Milfull said.
"We've enjoyed a great relationship with CQUniversity over that period as well, as well as the support of local businesses and the community.”
Yeppoon Surf Life Saving Club will head to the State Awards of Excellence in August to represent the region in the race to become Surf Life Saving Queensland's Club of the Year.