City offering free lifeguard certification courses to address shortage
Cambridge, Ontario – For the first time, the City of Cambridge is offering the opportunity for free lifeguard certification courses to avid swimmers interested in becoming a lifeguard and instructor for the city.
The ‘Complete Lifesaving Course’ is valued at over $1K and is open to anyone 16 years of age or older, following the successful completion of a swim assessment.
“We are proud to be able to offer this free of charge to anyone with existing swimming experience interested in becoming a lifeguard,” said Hardy Bromberg, Deputy City Manager of Community Development. “With the current shortage of lifeguards and instructors being experienced across municipalities, we hope that this offer will not only remove cost barriers associated with certification but help fill vacant positions within our city.”
“We want to attract strong swimmers, whether they are a student, retiree, stay-at-home parent or looking for a career change,” said Lesley Head, Director of Recreation and Culture. “The idea is really to break down barriers and make it easier to get lifeguards trained and in our pools. This will save them the cost of course fees and fast-track them to a job with the City that pays up to $20 per hour.
“Lifeguarding provides me with the flexibility to work a part-time job in retirement in an area of fitness I love following a career as a police officer in the community,” said Kathryn, lifeguard with the City of Cambridge. “I have met so many new people and it’s given me the opportunity to engage with the public and continue to give back to my community.”
The 19-weeks certification is offered through the Lifesaving Society and includes:
· Bronze Medallion
· Bronze Cross
· Standard First Aid with CPR C
· National Lifeguard and Lifesaving and Swim Instructor
Those interested in certification must register for and successfully pass an initial swimming skill assessment taking place Wednesday, October 19 and 26. The assessment will evaluate swimming ability and fit. Those who pass can then enrol in the Complete Lifesaving Course. Classes are expected to begin in November with certification complete by spring 2023. Participants would be committed to working with the City of Cambridge as a lifeguard and swim instructor for a minimum of one year upon receipt of certification.
Registration for the initial swimming assessment is open until October 25, 2022.
For more information, visit cambridge.ca/CompleteLifesaving