Peer Supporters at Secret Harbour Surf Lifesaving Club
“Surf Lifesaving WA recognises that the mental well-being of our members is important in helping them maintain healthy relationships, cope with the normal stressors of life, and better contribute to their communities, as well as being key to organisational success and sustainability.” [www.facebook.com/surflifesavingwa, 12 September 2019]
At Secret Harbour SLSC, members are invited to connect with our Peer Support volunteers if they need assistance, support and even just a listening ear.
Peer Supporters are active members of SHSLSC who are available to provide confidential support and refer members to additional resources if required. They can help their peers work through issues, options and goals whilst providing emotional and empathetic support.
The Peer Support Program is overseen by the SLSWA Development Officer and our volunteers take part in peer support training run by SLSWA.
Let us introduce you to our Peer Support volunteers at SHSLSC, Carolyn Wilson, Lorry Rule and Daniel Andrew.
A long standing member of SHSLSC, Carolyn joined the club 20 years ago with the aim of learning how to stay safe at the beach and to help out at the club. Her eldest of three children was just 8 years old at the time and since then Carolyn has seen the club grow from 300 members to around 1000!
The desire to volunteer started Carolyn’s outstanding tenure as one of the club’s most dedicated and accomplished members. Carolyn is the recipient of a vast portfolio of awards which acknowledge her achievements and excellence in surf lifesaving such as patrolling, officiating, volunteering and being an inspiration to our youth. All whilst contributing countless hours to the club and the wider surf lifesaving community.
Carolyn is well known by her family and peers as someone who demonstrates resilience and strength in the face of life challenges and is a natural fit to provide assistance and advice as a Peer Supporter. At age 14, Carolyn was involved in a serious motorbike accident, which has presented many challenges, but she managed to work with and around them.
Carolyn became a Registered Nurse/Midwife (32 years) and played & coached Netball, Water skiing and on top of that has a black belt in taekwondo!
Here is what Carolyn had to say about her time at Secret Harbour SLSC and involvement in Surf Lifesaving:
“(I)…grew up on farm in SA near the Barossa Valley with three brothers and rarely went to the beach. In fact I hated the beach, now I love it!!”
“Surf lifesaving has given our children a fantastic life platform for work, friendship, knowledge and a wider family.”
“I am just passionate about what I do and I want everyone to have the same opportunities and more like I have had and everyone to feel included and valued.”
You can contact Carolyn at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I joined the club in 2007 when we moved to Secret Harbour from the UK. It was very small in those days and most members were from Navy families or had moved from overseas/interstate so we were all kind of orphans! The Surf club was like our second family. My kids were in the Nippers program and Hubby on the Board of Management.
I very quickly got my SRC then Bronze. Patrolling made me new families and friends which made adapting to a new life in Australia so much easier. Over the years I have competed as a Master, volunteered in kitchen/BBQ, got my RSA to do bar duty, have been a Level 2 Coach for beach, an age group Manager for nippers, Bronze trainer and Drone operator. I have quite a few awards which include Advanced First Aid, ARTC, spinal, pain management (green whistle) Apply First Aid, Advanced CPR etc. and Remote pilots licence (drone).
I applied to be a Peer Supporter as I feel there is a gap between new members and the old. The club has got really big and has lost some of the ‘family’ feel. People need a smiley friendly face that they can ask questions and feel at ease.
I work as a First Aid Officer at the local high school. I understand a lot of people have anxiety, stress and other similar issues. Sometimes it can help just knowing someone cares and can listen.
Most people at the club know me as Lorry. I was a police officer in the UK for 16 years and not many people know that! I have run quite a few Marathons and walked the Kokoda Trek last year.
I love to Ski paddle and have a passion for adventure and the outdoors. On weekends in winter, I hike or trail run the nation parks and hills around Perth.
Our club is great. I’ve loved all my roles but I get a buzz from helping with the youth! I’ve been on a few Crusaders camps and helped at organised activities and hope that I can continue to do so. Patrolling is a great opportunity to volunteer in the community and learn so much about the beach and ocean. Coming from a city background, the information and knowledge Ive received has been priceless.
I am very grateful to have the club community in my life.
You can contact Lorry at email@example.com
Daniel Andrew was just five years old when he started out with Secret Harbour SLSC. In the 20 years since those early days joining his parents on patrol as a kid and participating in nippers, Daniel worked his way through our youth program and progressed into roles requiring his advanced lifesaving skills. Daniel has been Patrol Officer for a number of years and has been involved as Operations Supervisor at a state level. Daniel really enjoys being on patrol, conducting Jetski patrols and training new Jetski operators.
Read more about Daniel’s surf lifesaving journey and his thoughts on being a Peer Supporter:
Over my years of involvement in Surf Life Saving I have worked for the organisation as a Lifeguard, Operations Supervisor, Emergency Response Team Member (Jetski) and Rescue Crew in the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter. During my time in these roles I’ve been involved with a range of critical incidents, both as the first responder and as a team leader debriefing patrol teams.
Being able to chat to someone who has experienced similar incidents and knowing you’re not alone after a critical incident is vital to all of our roles as volunteer lifesavers. It’s important to know that there are people there who know what you have been through and are there to listen if you want to talk.
I’m passionate about the work the club does in preventing coastal drownings and believe that being part of the club should be an enjoyable experience for all.
Fun facts about Daniel: “I share the same name as the Victorian premier and also don’t like sauce!”
You can contact Daniel at firstname.lastname@example.org.