Five lifesaving clubs (Altona LSC, Anglesea SLSC, Mornington LSC, Port Melbourne LSC and Woolamai Beach SLSC) are vying for the top two spots for the 2020 Youth Innovation Challenge (13-17 year olds), taken to a new interactive and exciting online format this year.

Each team had a variety of size, age gender mix, including one team as large as six and female-only teams (such as Mornington with a team made up of three sisters), as well a diversity of interests – some who were interested in Nippers, others in technology, member development and skill development. The youngest team of three very enthusiastic young members came from Woolamai Beach SLSC.

They were tasked with brainstorming, developing and pitching ideas that had to be creative, unique, realistic and feasible, using various online platforms. Each team will be given the opportunity to present their ideas to a panel of Life Saving Victoria Board and Council Executive Members, with the two finalists pitching their innovation to the relevant Life Saving Victoria Council Executive Committee.

“The aim of the Youth Innovation Challenge is to give youth a voice and empower them to be a part of innovating and setting a path for lifesaving.  This year it was also to provide an opportunity for our youth members to stay connected and to ensure they remained engaged and passionate about lifesaving,” said Kate McLauchlan, LSV’s Project Manager – People. “Last year’s Innovation Challenge at the inaugural Youth Symposium was a huge success, so we  wanted to make sure we could again provide an initiative that would empower our youth to dream big and come up with something that could potentially change the game of lifesaving.”


As part of this new online experience, each team was asked to nominate how they were going to collaborate as a team, using platforms such as Google docs, Zoom, Microsoft Teams or Facebook, as well as demonstrating their collaborations through a fun online platform, known as Padlet, which provided a great visual of each team’s collaboration.

Here’s a snapshot of this year’s Innovation Challenge ideas:


Team Altona’s idea is a Club Exchange Program to provide youth members an opportunity to experience beach conditions at different locations across Victoria. The program had both a patrol and training component, ensuring members could experience different conditions and experiences to that of their own club.

“Their proposal was brilliant both in execution of their idea, as well as the idea itself,” said Kate.


An Innovative and new communication portal app will be the pitch from Team Anglesea, which aims to provide a one-stop shop for members to receive all of the relevant information needed from weather, changes to patrol, training sessions, carnival updates, event opportunities, members qualifications and award currency.

They are proposing the need for a member communication Hub to house relevant information for each individual club, as well as relevant generic member information.


Three sisters, who have lifesaving in their blood, make up the Mornington team. They followed their grandfather into lifesaving and the family is a big part of the lifesaving community. Their idea is the proposal of a new rescue tube device.

“Their innovation and presentation is fantastic and very considered, with a heavy focus on our core business of saving lives,” said Kate.


Team Port Melbourne brings with them years of experience and dedication towards lifesaving, which was apparent from the outset as they tackled some of the big issues affecting youth in lifesaving.

Their pitch is named “Operation Nippers” and is a member wellbeing program, providing a pathway for U12 and U13 Nippers to complete before obtaining their Surf Rescue Certificate (SRC).  As stated on their video pitch: “Operation Nippers will connect, inspire and empower.”


The young team from Woolamai doesn’t disappoint with their impressive proposal of a new innovation Beach App named “LSV’s  Beach”, aiming to incorporate gamification into the teaching of the technical skills required to received SRC and Bronze qualifications, as well as Virtual Reality adventures, member engagement and opportunities to connect with likeminded members.

“The concept is thorough and included steps from creation through to implementation,” said Kate.

LSV’s General Manager People, Emma Atkins, said she was excited by the talent and dedication shown by these youth members.

“Not only was it so pleasing to see the creativity and time that each team applied to this challenge,” said Emma. “It was also fantastic to have such diverse ideas presented by each team, we know we have the future emergency service, community and business leaders in our ranks, their voice is incredibly important! We know we are in good hands moving forward with such inspiring members!”

The judging panel will have a very difficult task of selecting two finalists to proceed to the final round. Watch this space to see who makes it through and further details regarding all these innovations.

For those Emerging Leaders (18-30 years) who believe they have a game changing innovation and idea, we will be running an online innovation for you in the coming months.

Please complete this EOI if you would like to receive more information  

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