Outdoor pool gets early start on recruiting to avoid staff shortages from last year

Recreation programmer Robyn Hethey casts a wide net to try to bring in the experienced staff to run the various pool programs.

  • Apr. 14, 2013 2:00 p.m.

By Art Harrison, Trail Times

Recreation department staff at the Rossland swimming pool learned a hard lesson last summer when it struggled to hire sufficient staff to maintain aquatic programs.

This year the department is getting an early start in its recruitment campaign for the coming outdoor swimming season.

While indoor pools like the Trail Aquatic Centre maintain staff year-round, seasonal outdoor pools have to deal with the challenges of laying off staff in the fall and then recruiting in the spring.

In Rossland, recreation programmer Robyn Hethey casts a wide net to try to bring in the experienced staff to run the various pool programs.

“Things are looking a lot better this year. We put out province-wide ads to try to bring some people in,” Hethey said.

“We’ve already hired a pool manager and have picked up some senior staff with two or three coming back from last year. We’ve also got a number of students who were taking courses last year who finished their training and they’re banging on our doors.”

Hethey predicts a full range of aquatic programs this year with a possibility of new additions to enhance opportunities for competitive swimmers in Rossland.

“We’re working with the Stingrays in Trail to try to create a feeder club in Rossland,” said Hethey.

“We’d like to have programs in Rossland in June and July and then they could transfer to Trail after. We’re just working on schedules right now.”

Hethey said the training and certification process for becoming a lifeguard was extensive.

“The public might look at lifeguards as just kids hanging around the pool,” said Hethey. “But they have to be highly trained to be able to get the positions.”

Hethey explained that prospective lifeguards are required to take a ladder of courses before they can work in the field, potentially totalling over 200 hours of safety, first aid and lifesaving training.

“The initial training includes the Bronze medallion, Bronze Cross, Standard First Aid with CPR “C”, and National Life Saving, which is the first 100 hours,” Hethey explained.

“The additional courses include Assistant Water Safety Instructor (ASWI) and Water Safety Instructor (WSI).”

The degree of training obtained by anyone interested in becoming a lifeguard directly affects their chances of employment afterwards.

“In ranking the employability of teens with this training having the first four courses is like silver but with the AWSI and WSI as well, that ranks them as gold,” said Hethey. “But it’s definitely not a small commitment dollar-wise or time-wise.”

“All in all we’re feeling good about this season,” added Hethey.

“We’ve got experienced staff, who are good mentors to the younger staff and some grade 11’s and 12’s who are hopefully coming back. We just have to keep up the pressure on kids to complete their training.”

 

Just Posted

Rossland’s Seven Summits school gets grant to grow global presence

Centre for Learning hopes to triple the number of international students it has

Rural dividend grants awarded in Kootenay West

Kootenay West MLA Katrine Conroy made the grant announcements in Trail on Thursday

Rossland skiier places third at U19 Canadian Ski Cross

Rossland’s Sage Stefani finished out a successful season.

Warfield elementary school celebrating 70 years

Webster Elementary School officially opened April 23, 1949; open house and events planned next week

Exhausted Rossland skateboard volunteers pass torch to city council

Organization asks council to take over project

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Landlord of alleged Okanagan shooter recounts deadly day

Tony Friesen was working in one of the units of his Penticton building when he heard shots

Foreign national arrested in connection to thefts at YVR

A woman, 60, is being held in police custody as Richmond RCMP investigate

Police pursue pesky porker on Vancouver Island

‘This was allegedly not the pig’s first escape’

Westjet tries again to dismiss proposed class-action lawsuit alleging discrimination

Former flight attendant claims airline broke contractual promise to create harassment-free workplace

Man airlifted to hospital after apparent hunting incident in East Kootenay

The man was in stable condition when he was flown out of Fairmont Hot Springs to a Calgary hospital

Police probe eight fires set at B.C. elementary school

Nanaimo RCMP say fires appear to have been set intentionally

Most Read