Pida doing us proud in The Pilbara

13 July 2018

Pida Bule-Turner has had a momentous year in The Pilbara, where she recently began working with Royal Life Saving WA in a vital position as Program Coordinator, networking with the local pools and community to deliver key programs in the area.

Port Hedland based Pida recruited, trained and mentored a group of young Aboriginal residents through their Bronze Medallion certificate, First Aid and Pool Lifeguard qualifications as part of the inaugural Talent Pool program

Pida said the participants were one of the most well-prepared groups that she had ever taken through any of her courses. This is a significant achievement considering that almost all participants had little to no swimming background.

Talent Pool has been designed to use the local council swimming pool as the main vehicle to engage, train and empower young Aboriginal people with the primary objective being to transition graduates into their first-time work experience.

Research has found that the drowning rate amongst Australian Aboriginals is three times higher than other Australian children aged 0–14 years, and is ranked the second-most common cause of injury death.

By enabling this group of Aboriginal young people to learn skills to provide employment pathways in the aquatic industry, Royal Life Saving WA hopes they can become mentors to other young people in their community, ensuring that swimming and water safety skills become a priority for Aboriginal children.

Pida worked intensively with the Bronze Medallion group to progress them through their First Aid qualifications, enrolling 7 young people into a Pool Lifeguard course.

Pida also competed in the Lake Argyle Swim in May, with her team winning their division in the iconic event! The team made up largely of Pool Lifeguards from Port Hedland, who’d recently taken part in Talent Pool, won the 10km quads division in a time of two hours 55 minutes and 31 seconds.

The event was a real highlight for the young lifeguards taking part with Pida saying "the preparations were very nerve wracking as we’ve never done anything like this before but diving in and completing the swim was one of the best feelings in the world. We never even dreamed of doing something like this before. Completing the event was even more special because we were the first of our peers to do so, hopefully we have inspired others to do the same.’

Royal Life Saving wishes Pida and all the Talent Pool participants, past and future, all the very best as they pave the way for water safety awareness in the Pilbara.

For more information on Royal Life Saving WA's involvement in The Pilbara, click below.

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