By Molly Magennis
Lifesavers from Altona Life Saving Club (LSC) and Williamstown Swimming and Lifesaving Club competed in back-to-back senior and junior aquatic sport carnivals at Mount Martha.
On Saturday November 20, 500 competitors competed in swim, board, ski and rescue and resuscitation events.
The carnival was officially opened by Bunurong Land Council chairperson and Elder Aunty Dyan Summers gave a Welcome to Country and shared her family’s history of living on the Bunurong lands at Mount Martha.
The following day, the juniors took to the beach, back for their first carnival in nine months and their first event since Victoria’s sixth lockdown was lifted. For many under eight and under nine competitors, it was their first carnival ever.
Life Saving Victoria manager for aquatic sport Simon Butterly said that LSV was delighted to return back to competition, particularly for the young competitors who hadn’t competed in so long.
“Our junior competitors are not only the future of our sport, but the future of our patrol force, who upon completing junior competition at the end of under 13s, will complete their surf rescue certificate and begin patrolling across our 57 lifesaving clubs,” he said.
“The skills gained in competition, such as board paddling and rescues, resuscitation and surf swimming are vital in our juniors’ journey to becoming community lifesavers in future.
“To have almost 400 junior competitors in our first carnival for season 2021-22 means the future is bright for LSV.”
“LSV is also thrilled to return to our first event on the Mornington Peninsula for the season, bringing competitors, officials, volunteers, staff and families back to the region. We must also thank Mount Martha Life Saving Club for the tremendous job they did hosting us over the weekend.”