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became avolunteer surf lifesaver and lifeguard who now works as a multicultural officerfor Life Saving Victoria (LSV) ensuring others are safe at the beach and in thewater.

Originallyborn in Afghanistan, Ramzi and his family moved to Pakistan and lived thereuntil late 2011 when they made the risky journey to Australia as asylum seekersand refugees.

“I’ma refugee, an asylum seeker and came by boat,” Ramzi said of the unique way hecame to Australia.

“HowI came to Australia motivated me to learn about water safety.

“Youwouldn’t imagine someone from Afghanistan to be a lifesaver but that was themain thing when I was travelling on a boat not knowing how to swim…it was arisky journey to take without any water safety knowledge.”

Uponsettling in Melbourne in 2012, Ramzi quickly wanted to learn about water safetyand how to swim having crossed dangerous seas on his journey to Australia.

Ramzijoined in on one of Life Saving Vitoria’s Multicultural water safety programsat local Melbourne club Edithvale LSC and was hooked from his first day andexperience.

“Wehad a classroom session where we taught about water safety and then we weregiven an opportunity to have a day out at the beach, my first experience at thebeach… and that was at Edithvale Lifesaving Club,” Ramzi said of hisintroduction to Australian beaches.

“Idecided to be a lifesaver, but there was a small little problem that I couldn’tswim, so I had to learn how to swim…I had to go through extensive swimminglessons.”

Withthe support and training from LSV Ramzi gained his surf rescue certificate andhis bronze medallion and went on to become a pool lifeguard before he startedworking as a Project Officer within LSV’s Multicultural program, where he nowteaches others in multicultural communities to be beach and water safe.

“Lifesavingis my life!” Ramzi said of the community and culture of lifesaving that haschanged his life since first arriving in Australia.

Tohear more from the Ramzi, make sure you watch episode six of Surf Studio onthe @SLSAustralia Facebook page or at sls.com.au/surf-studio/.

Surf Studio is regularonline show with each episode featuring stories from around Australia andcovering a range of topics such as sport, lifesaving, leadership,education etc and Surf Life Saving Australia encourages everyone to beinvolved. If you, or anyone you know has a story that you would like toshare via Surf Studio please email surfstudio@slsa.asn.au

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