Letters to the editor

Environmental leadership

Just a bit of food for thought: the world is focusing on climate change; let's put us on the map for leaders in a town that leads the way in positive action.

Ideas: producing lots of local grown foods, local electric bus services, recycling and cleanest beaches etc.

Angus Schofield, Dalmeny

GRADUATES: An enthusiastic group has graduated to teach ethics in schools on the South and Far South Coast.

GRADUATES: An enthusiastic group has graduated to teach ethics in schools on the South and Far South Coast.

Ethics teachers graduate

There are 12 new ethics teachers ready to step into classrooms after volunteers from Batemans Bay, Gerringong, Bermagui, Narooma and Pambula attended an ethics teacher training workshop in Narooma.

The workshop gave participants - parents and carers, grandparents and retirees - the opportunity to hone their skills in facilitation and classroom management.

Cath Renwick, who will run a class at Bermagui Public School liked "the increasingly specific practise sessions we had over the two days". "I have found myself thinking about procedural questions ever since and how they can enhance conversation in every way," she said.

The free workshop was organised by Primary Ethics, a not-for-profit organisation that works with the Department of Education to offer discussion-based classes to students who have opted out of weekly religious education classes.

Mark Fitzpatrick had recently retired and was looking for opportunities to contribute to his community while challenging himself to learn new skills to teach at Narooma Public School: "The Primary Ethics program encourages kids to be thoughtful and considerate about issues that come up in their daily lives. It helps them see that there may not be a single right answer, and it helps them to understand the concept of empathy. I think that I'll also learn a lot from the kids."

Ms Renwick agreed: "Just as it will open up their world, so will it mine - all those fresh and different views on life. I can't wait to get started."

Visit primaryethics.com.au or email farsouthcoast-region@primaryethics.com.au

Primary Ethics

Well-deserved

On Saturday, November 9, members of the Bermagui Surf Lifesaving Club and the Far South Coast branch got together with members from Marine Rescue to listen to the National Surf Lifesaving Clubs annual awards in Queensland.

After an excellent meal everyone crowded around Cheryl McKenzie's mobile phone to hear the announcement of the winner of the Innovation Award. A roar went up when the crowd heard that the Far South Coast SLS branch had won the award for an innovation developed with the Bermagui Marine Rescue Unit.

This involvesputting an RIB on the back of Bermagui Marine Rescues Steber 38 for transport to remote areas and the launching of drones from the back of the Steber.

Both groups consider this an important lifesaving innovation whereby Marine Rescue can transport the surf club RIBs to remote locations which they previously could not access.

Lifesavers can remain dry until they get there. The first exercise was carefully planned by initiator Denise Page (Master, Marine Rescue) and Euan McKenzie, who developed the exercise. They also did a full prior risk assessment. The taking of the RIB on board was extremely simple and probably took about 90 seconds. The RIB fitted perfectly on the back deck.

The drone exercise was also successful although must be tried in rough weather. The drone will be a useful tool in search and rescue. Last year the two groups produced a poster, Safe in the Water, Safe on the Water. Cheryl McKenzie and Caron Parfitt (Unit Commander, Marine Rescue) see this as a major step. They commented on the excellent relationship and camaraderie between the two organisations. They thanked both teams, who were vital in making the innovation a success, for their enthusiasm.

Bermagui Marine Rescue

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