Recently awarded both the Victorian and SLSA Trainer of the year awards, Jessica Sincock is a dedicated and outstanding member of the lifesaving family. But being an exceptional trainer is not all she does – here is her lifesaving story.
Current Club: Lorne SLSC
How long have you been involved in lifesaving?
I am currently the Vice Club Captain at Lorne SLSC, where I have been a member since 2003. I completed my Bronze Medallion in 2015 and went on to gain my Silver Medallion awards. I completed the Advanced Lifesaving Camp in 2015 and also currently hold my Gold Medallion. I have worked for the Australian Lifeguard Service for four seasons and have been a Rescue Water Craft Lifeguard (jetski lifeguard), for two seasons.
Why did you become involved in lifesaving?
I became involved in Lifesaving because my family and I have spent every summer in Lorne for as long as I can remember. My parents enrolled me in Nippers and I have been part of the club ever since. I didn’t actually enjoy Nippers that much, however when we started learning about DRSABCD and the first aid side of things, I knew I had found something I really enjoyed. I think this involvement has led me down my career path of nursing and midwifery.
What are some of your responsibilities at your club?
Currently, I am the Club Vice Captain. I help to organise patrols for the season, and I have started to work on organising leadership roles for the Lorne Mountain to Surf and Pier to Pub event days. I am also working on programs to help keep member participation up in the club!
I am happy to say I have just brought in our very first Pink Patrol. I am very excited to see lots of females (and hopefully males) all come down to participate. This year the club also started up our Community Engagement and Leadership Program. This program invited Indigenous students from the Gunbalanya Community School in the Northern Territory to learn about lifesaving. We taught them our culture on the beach and what we do as lifesavers in Lorne. They then invited us to their community and taught us all about their hometown, kinship and safety around their waterways. I am extremely excited to be a leader on this program and I look forward to what the program will bring this season.
What do you enjoy most about lifesaving?
The thing I enjoy most is being able to constantly learn new things as well as meeting new people. Whether it is in the Lorne SLSC or at an IRB carnival, you are always meeting new people from Lorne and across the whole state. Having just participated in the Building Leaders Scholarship Program and visiting Sri Lanka, I was challenged like I have never been before with the language barrier and unfamiliar environments. It was extremely enjoyable being able to trust the team I was with and to be able to successfully complete the training.
How do you encourage others to get involved with lifesaving and volunteering?
Having just taken on the Vice Club Captain role at Lorne SLSC, I am lucky enough to be able to think of new opportunities for members, and try and encourage members to stay involved at the club. We have just started a new initiative targeted at females in the club, to try and increase involvement after they complete their Surf Rescue Certificate (SRC). It is called Lorne SLSC Surf Sisters, and we hope to create a safe and fun group where we can learn and develop new skills together.
What is your greatest achievement in lifesaving so far?
My proudest achievement (besides SLSA Trainer of the Year), would definitely have to be winning the Sharky Award at Lorne SLSC 2018/19. This award is the Best Clubman award, and I am extremely grateful and honoured that I was awarded it. Lorne is my favourite place in the world, and my involvement in the Surf Club has helped me get through some extremely difficult times in my life. I am so appreciative of the friends I have made and they’ve become like a second family. So for the club to say that I was the best clubman of that season means the world to me.
You recently won both the Victorian and SLSA Trainer of the Year awards. What do these awards mean to you?
I was extremely honoured to have been awarded Victorian and Australian Trainer of the Year this year. When accepting the award, it’s kind of funny because you are super proud of yourself, but at the same time it’s not why I did all of those things and put all that work in. I am doing it to create better lifesavers and share all the knowledge I have gained in all the opportunities I have been lucky to have. I feel extremely privileged to be a part of the Lorne SLSC, and that they trust me so much to make such large changes in the club. It has truly been a huge and wonderful year for me!
When you’re not lifesaving, what keeps you busy?
When not participating in the many lifesaving activities I love, I am a registered midwife and currently studying nursing. Next year is my final year of study, and I hope to eventually work in the Special Care Nursery with lots of special cute babies who need a little extra love and care.
Current volunteer roles:
Lorne Vice Club Captain
Building Leaders Scholar Alumni
Lorne SLSC Community Engagement Leadership Program Leader
Lorne SLSC Patrol 6 Mentor
Previous volunteer roles:
Lorne SLSC IRB Captain
Lorne SLSC Chief Instructor
Lorne SLSC Patrol 6 Captain