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Representatives from Hunter Surf Life Saving and Newcastle Permanent gathered on Saturday 26 September for the ceremonial raising of the flags, marking the beginning of the 2020/21 patrol season.

Patrols are now underway from Tea Gardens/Hawks Nest to Catherine Hill Bay, with 8,000 local surf lifesavers enlisted to help protect Hunter beachgoers this summer.

Last season, volunteers from Hunter Surf Lifesaving dedicated 52,676 hours overseeing the safety of 565,676 community members, performing 146 rescues and tending first aid to 649.

Henry Scruton, President at Hunter Surf Lifesaving said despite recent obstacles presented by COVID-19, his team is equipped and ready for the upcoming summer months.

“Spending time at the beach is a way of life for many Novocastrians. Our dedicated team has worked tirelessly to develop the necessary COVID safety plans that will allow our beaches to stay open and safe this summer,” he said.

“With the support of our long-term community partner, Newcastle Permanent, we are able to continue to deliver our essential lifesaving services and ensure our volunteers have the equipment, training and skills they need to stay at the top of their game.

“Newcastle Permanent’s support also enables the recruitment, training, and retention of our junior surf lifesavers which will help to ensure our beaches remain safe for generations to come.” he said.

Newcastle Permanent Chief Customer Experience Delivery Office, Paul Juergens said the organisation was proud to continue their long-standing partnership with Hunter Surf Lifesaving which is now in its 38th year.

“As a customer-owned organisation, we’re passionate about supporting local community groups and organisations that help make our community great.

“Our ongoing partnership with Hunter Surf Lifesaving is an integral part of our community sponsorship and one which has been built on a strong foundation of shared values and commitment to the community.

“We recognise the important role volunteer surf lifesavers play in keeping our community safe and it’s a privilege to support Hunter Surf Lifesaving and their dedicated team in continuing their vital work,” he concluded.

Newcastle Permanent supports Surf Life Saving from the Central Coast to the Queensland border through its partnerships with the six regional Surf Life Saving branches, including Central Coast, Lower North Coast, Mid North Coast, North Coast and Far North Coast SLS clubs.

Every year, Newcastle Permanent invests more than $1.5 million through its community partnerships, staff donations, volunteering and fundraising, all of which helps families across regional NSW to lead happy, healthy and active lives.

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