Mantra Surf Club & Mangalore Surf Club, Mangalore, Karnataka, India co-jointly organized a week-long Beach Lifeguard Course at Tannirbavi beach ahead of the summer with the Indian Lifesaving and Lifesaving Sports Federation, an International Life Saving Federation member of India.
A total of 8 surf club volunteers participated in the training and acquired surf rescue and lifeguard skills.
The one-of-a-kind engagement with the local Surf Clubs is a first move towards the dream project of ‘Surfers as Lifesavers’ said Mr. Vijay Kumar Sah, Vice President ILLSF and a Drowning Prevention Leader. This was the first international lifeguard certification program organized in the region. He also emphasized on the importance of educating the public at large with very valuable water safety messages and trained the surf volunteers personally with the 10 key safety messages developed by RNLI and donated banners to the clubs to take the message ahead.
The training for Beach Lifeguards comprised of Duty of Lifeguards, Safe Beach Operations, Patrolling, Communications, Rescue and Revival Skills with various situation handling that built great confidence in the trainee candidates.
Mr. Sebastian Raj, President ILLSF appreciated the candidates for their participation and zest for learning the Skills.
The clubs have decided to reach out to the local schools and Institutions to spread the message on Aquatic Safety and Survival skills through Sports, Surf, and Swimming lessons in order to support the drowning prevention mission.
Rammohan Paranjape from Mantra Surf Club and Dhruvin Jasrani from Mangalore Surf Club came together to organize this program at the start of the year, as they felt the need for proper lifeguard training and certification was the need of the hour in the region due to rise in drownings in the past one year, as more and more people are flocking to beaches post-pandemic.
The program has already begun a great interest amongst surfing, swimming, and fishermen community in the region, as many have shown interest in taking part in the certification program which will also provide alternate employment opportunities both within the country and outside. The organizers want to take the momentum forward and really focus on making the beaches safer, create employment, engage the community and develop athletes for lifesaving sports as well.