THERE’S something special about Starfish Nippers at Fingal Bay Surf Life Saving Club.
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Nippers is on every Sunday morning from 9am and now you will see the Starfish Nippers program for special needs kids running alongside the usual Nippers program.
Starfish Nippers teaches children who may not be able to participate in the mainstream program water safety skills.
The program is run by Fingal Bay Surf Life Saving Club and is 100% sponsored by an anonymous donor so there is no cost to families of special needs kids in accessing the program.
Star Fish Nipper Charlotte’s mother, Coco Le Saint, told News Of The Area, “Charlotte would not be able to do normal Nippers but is able to get water safety awareness while having fun in a controlled environment under the Starfish Nippers Program.”
The program is facilitated by Mitchell Fraser and Nicki Morrow along with Nippers who have their SRC qualification, this allows the team to have a one on one ratio while the Starfish Nippers are in the water.
Safety is paramount and the program participants wear life vests based on their in water skills.
One of the great things about the program for families is that their special needs child can be in Starfish Nippers while their other children can be taking part in Nippers, making sure that no one misses out.
Nicki Morrow said, “Starfish Nippers is great for the children in the program and it also give the parents a valuable time out.”
The first year the program ran it started with two children now there are eight involved and all of them are engaged in learning water safety, new skills and gaining a sense of achievement.
Starfish Nippers is only run at a few Surf Life Saving Clubs across Australia.
By Marian SAMPSON