2018 Media Releases

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Swim teacher makes a splash by taking out prestigious state award

26 May 2017

Mitchell Shire Leisure Services swim teacher Jennifer Fuhrmeister has been handed the Victorian AUSTWIM Teacher of Adults Award 2017.

The award, one of eight categories presented each year, identifies and honours a swim teacher for their contributions to aquatic education and water safety for adults.

Ms Fuhrmeister, who has been with Council for almost 10 years, said it was very humbling to win the award.

“I’ve never won an award before so it was really special,” she said.

“It’s very nice to have won the award, but it really is a reflection on the entire place (Mitchell Shire Leisure Services), not just me.”

Ms Fuhrmeister said she loved the challenges of teaching adults to swim.

“It’s so rewarding seeing the progress someone makes when learning to swim,” she said.

Ms Fuhrmeister was nominated for the award by colleagues Chris Hollingworth, Laura Lehner and Karyn Egan.

Ms Hollingworth said Ms Fuhrmeister’s work with the Grey Medallion – a 10-week program aimed at teaching seniors about water safety – was one of the key factors for her nomination.

“Jen is a valued member of the swim school family at Mitchell Shire Leisure Services,” Ms Hollingworth said.

“She is highly respected, is fantastic at her job, and has such a caring nature that is perfect for teaching swimming.

“Jen’s work with the Grey Medallion was fantastic. She, and colleague Lisa Gawne, put in a lot of volunteer hours and even put on a morning tea out of their own pockets after each and every session.”

Mitchell Shire Mayor Rhonda Sanderson said the recognition was well-deserved.

“Learning to swim is a valuable like skill for both children and adults," Cr Sanderson said.

"Quite simply, the important work swim instructors such as Jennifer do each and every day helps save lives.

"I applaud Jennifer for her dedication to teaching the Mitchell community how to swim and congratulate her on being presented with this prestigious award."

Two other Mitchell Shire Leisure Services staff were nominated for awards – Lisa Bess (AUSTSWIM Teacher of Infant and Preschool Aquatics) and Samantha Brown (AUSTSWIM Teacher of Swimming and Water Safety).