Protecting What We Love
Surf Life Saving Australia
4x4 D-MAX LS-M
Community Engagement & Club Operations
By the time the sun first bathes the sand in its soft morning light, the day has already begun for many at the Seacliff Surf Life Saving Club. The patrol team has readied the gear; procedures and safety protocols have been discussed; the Nippers co-ordinators have prepared the day’s activities and equipment; and the surfboat team has towed the boat to the water’s edge, ready to launch. Of course, it’s not all serious business - as the club members go about their work, smiles and laughter lightens the mood as friends and colleagues swap jokes and stories about recent adventures.
It’s a scene that plays out most weekends at Surf Life Saving clubs right around the country. An iconic institution, Surf Life Saving is well known for its exemplary service to the community, for its commitment to inclusiveness, and of course, saving lives. But what isn’t always equally recognised is the way that the clubs bring generations of families and friends together.
One family that exemplifies this perfectly is the Henty-Charles family of Seacliff, Adelaide.
Shauna Henty first got into Nippers when she was 10 years old, and she’s been living and breathing surf life saving ever since. Fast forward to today, and she’s an active patrol member, competitor and recent junior coach and committee member. Her partner Josh Charles is the current surf boat captain and patrol member. Their two kids both participate and compete in Nippers, and Shauna’s mum Ruth Henty – aged 75 – was still competing up until a couple of seasons ago, making her the oldest female competitor in South Australia at the time. She’s looking at making a comeback in the near future.
“Surf Life Saving means so much to our family,” smiles Shauna. “It’s always been a big part of our lives, and I love that no matter who you are, there’s something for all ages and abilities, and everyone can get involved.”
Shauna says the benefits for her kids have been immeasurable.
“Watching the kids grow in their confidence and ability is amazing. They’ve got goals to become patrolling members themselves one day, and they’re learning about resilience and community responsibility at the same time,” she explains.
According to Shauna, the strong bonds formed at the beach go beyond her immediate family.
“You just have to see how many people we get down here at the club BBQ at the end of the day, and watch how much we all enjoy each other’s company – it’s such a great community of friends.”
Josh is equally passionate about the club and the friendships made.
“For a lot of us, it’s all about the mateship,” says Josh. “Take for example the guys in the surfboat crew: we’re a close-knit bunch, we all look out for each other, we don’t let anyone down, and we’re probably all equally a bit crazy too.”
Josh says that one of the cornerstones of the club’s success is hard work.
“We’ve won two State club of the year titles in a row, and that comes down to effort and perseverance,” says Josh with pride.
“And that’s where the D-MAX fits in perfectly. It never lets you down. It’s got plenty of power, it’s ideal for towing, and it makes light work of anything we throw at it.”
Josh speaks highly of the partnership between SLSA and Isuzu UTE Australia, and he can see the benefits that this relationship has on the beach every day.
“It’s great that Isuzu UTE supports lifesaving right around Australia, it makes our job easier and really helps us to patrol and protect our beaches,” says Josh. “Because at the end of the day, serving the community is what we’re all about; making sure people are safe and they go home to their families.”
Find out more about the surf life saving and Isuzu UTE partnership here.