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NSW's Indigenous Surfing Program brings kids together

Girls from Bourke High School participate in Surfing NSW's Indigenous Surfing Program © Smith/SNSW



Culture Updates

Kool Kids Club and Bourke High School students partake at Maroubra

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 19 November, 2013 - Surfing NSW’s Indigenous Surfing Program recently took place at Maroubra with over 20 kids participating in the program, in a collective effort between Surfing NSW, Maroubra’s Kool Kids Club and Bourke’s Tough Tiddaz.

The program educated all kids of an Indigenous background on the importance of assessing surf conditions, how to correctly paddle, sunsmart behaviour and how to negotiate waves.

"It was awesome that the Kool Kids got to hang out with kids from Bourke High School and compare stories about their communities,” said Kool Kids Activity Worker Melissa Leaudais. “The afternoon was full of smiles and laughter. The girls put their fears aside and watching them swimming in the waves was amazing. It is these simple things that provide a great learning experience for the kids."

The Kool Kids Club currently participate in an Indigenous Surfing Program every Thursday afternoon partnering with Surfing NSW and Maroubra’s Let's Go Surfing.

The program develops young people's strength and resilience and teaches them about water safety. The program has been running for over seven years. All participants scored themselves a certificate, a cap and a medallion.

In 2013, Surfing NSW is looking forward to hosting the Indigenous Surfing Program (ISP) for all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. The Surfing NSW 'ISP' aims to attract large numbers of young indigenous communities to beaches throughout the state.

The program promotes health, enjoyment and wellbeing through surfing and ocean safety awareness, bringing positive education to remote and local indigenous communities.

Our principle partners, the NSW Government - Communities, Sport & Recreation and The Australian Government - Department of Regional Australia, Local Government, Arts and Sport, continue to support this initiative and are aware of the benefits this program has on indigenous health and activity.

With participation increasing rapidly each year, Surfing NSW is excited about the continued growth and development of participants through the program.

Tough Tiddaz are a group of females from Bourke High School who are participating in a strengths-based program, which provides the opportunity for improved education outcomes, enhanced self-esteem, health and resilience and to reduce the risk of harm from AOD and violence.

The program is being led by Senior Constable Kelly Edwards, the Youth Liaison Office with Darling River Local Area Command with the support of the Bourke Alcohol Working Group, Centacare Wilcannia Forbes, NSW Far West Medicare Local, Bourke PCYC, Mission Australia and other local service providers.

Ethan Smith

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