Political waves crash together for community cause

Youth MP Quinn Rimmer, left, Simon Court, Youth MP Lily Pearce, Jan Tinetti and Cameron Luxton happily ashore after taking on the mount surf on an IRB. Photo: Jamie Torughton/Dscribe Media Services.

Tauranga Youth MPs and their political party counterparts are joining forces to support community causes in the city.

Lily Pearce and Quinn Rimmer joined Labour’s Jan Tinetti, and ACT’s Simon Court and Cameron Luxton for their community engagement project at the Mount Maunganui Surf Lifesaving Club on Monday.

Using their MPs’ community know-how, yesterday’s event acted to raise awareness about Surf Lifesaving services in the community and the struggles the club has been facing since Covid.

“To be a part of the athlete side of surf lifesaving you have to be a volunteer lifeguard, so people train as lifeguards so they can compete,” says Lily.

A lot of the incidents Lily and Quinn deal with aren’t out on the water, but in on the land.

“I’ve had 10 total up and around the Mount assisting people with first aid trips… its 50 per cent of this club’s activities in terms of emergencies,” says Quinn

Because of the area that Mount surf life club takes on – Mount Main Beach, Pilot Bay and up to Tay Street - Lily and Quinn emphasise just how important it is they have volunteers that are constantly training.

“Good lifeguards are those that are fit and can take on the conditions,” says Lily.

Supporting Quinn and Lily with their community project, Labour List MP Jan Tinetti says she’s on board with anything they can do to help the club.

During Monday’s meeting, Lily and Quinn took the political party members out on IRBs to get a taste of what they do as volunteer lifeguards.

“I really appreciate all the technical skills that Lily and Quinn have developed but also the confidence it must give them to know they can operate boats and actually help people and save lives,” says Simon Court.

Fellow surf lifesaver and Youth MP Ben Cosford, who represents National, is also involved in the project but unfortunately could not attend yesterday’s event.

With Jan and Simon’s stint out on the water, Lily hopes they got a bit more background to what they do.

“We’re in the community and a lot of people don’t really know what we do, so we hope we gave them a bit of a taster about life guarding.”

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