Community Outreach

Part of Galveston Island Beach Patrol’s mission is to educate the public about beach safety and be a good partner to our surrounding community. We work hard on and off the beach to spread water safety information because we understand the importance of preventing emergencies before they happen. We also appreciate the outstanding support we receive from our community and work to give back to that community in any way that we can. In an effort to fulfill this mission, we organize or participate in the various programs listed below.

School Educational Program

Each year, The Galveston Island Beach Patrol strives to reach as many school aged children and youth in Galveston and the surrounding area as possible.

Our message is simple:

  1. Avoid Rip Currents – Stay away from rock jetties and piers
  2. Swim Near A Lifeguard
  3. Never Swim Alone
  4. Obey Warning Signs and Flags
  5. Take Sun and Heat Precautions
  6. Feet First, First Time

Presentations vary from 45 minutes to 1 hour and are informative, educational, and dynamic.

Teachers are encouraged to access engaging water safety educational activities and supporting educational materials here.

Galveston Marine Response

Click here to learn more.

Community Water Safety Day Camps

In greater Galveston area no one lives far from the water. We feel it imperative that our population, especially young people, have an understanding and respect for the aquatic environment.

The Community Water Safety Day Camp program has been a wonderful way for the Beach Patrol to give back to the community that supports it so well, and is an opportunity to encourage lifeguards of the future.

Our goal is to instill a love for the beach and ocean while teaching kids how to be safe in and around the water. We also wish to support our community partners who do so much to mentor young people and make sure all of our kids have access to the wonderful things Galveston has to offer.

These fun, well structured, 4 hour camps cover the basics of water safety and expose campers to lifesaving concepts, beach and water safety principles, and information about Gulf Coast marine life. Hands on components of the program include beach games, surfing/rescue board use, and lifesaving sport.

Camps are offered over a two week period in the summer and are open to non-profit organizations serving Galveston area youth on a first come first serve basis.

If you wish to know more or would like to schedule a camp please contact us at

Basic Water Rescue Training

Galveston Island Beach Patrol provides a Basic Water Rescue course to many Galveston first responders and surf camp instructors. We want to provide the knowledge and skills necessary to prevent, recognize, and respond to many types of aquatic emergencies. Once completed, participants will know the characteristic behaviors of someone who needs help, and learn some basic reaching and throwing assists.

We also teach the signals we use at Beach Patrol to communicate with each other, in case we are working on a rescue together. Living on an island, we believe the more people who have a basic knowledge about beach and water safety, the better. Participants are not trained lifeguards, but they learn how to protect themselves while assisting others, and when to alert the proper first responders, if needed.

Junior Lifeguard Program

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Veracruz Lifeguard Exchange Program

Over the past 15 years the Galveston Island Beach Patrol has had a special relationship with lifeguards from Veracruz, Mexico. Beach Patrol representatives joined a sister cities goodwill mission to Veracruz in 2000 and found fledgling lifeguard organizations in Veracruz and neighboring Boca Del Rio. The guards were doing a good job, but had no contact with other lifeguard organizations and had implemented policies based on common sense and what they could gleam from the popular TV show “Guardianes de la Bahia” (“Baywatch”).Since that time the Beach Patrol has traveled to Veracruz 12 times, first to train, then co-teach, then monitor lifeguard academies. Representatives have traveled to Galveston 3 times to go through the Beach Patrol annual lifesaving academy.

Knowledge of both beach lifesaving and the different cultures has benefited all groups on both sides of the border. The chance to support and learn from our brothers and sisters in lifesaving has been a phenomenal experience for the Beach Patrol.

In January 2016, Galveston Island Beach Patrol was able to go back to Veracruz for the first time in 6 years to offer training. Our Chief Peter Davis and four of our Lifeguard Supervisors conducted a week-long rigorous academy to 60 lifeguards from all over the coast of Mexico. At the end of the training, 27 of those guards earned ILS (International Life Saving Federation) certifications, and the remaining 33 earned Civil Service certifications.

Jesse Tree Survivor Support Network Partnership

The Jesse Tree’s “Beach Patrol Project” or Survivor’s Support Network (SSN) began with a few casual conversations between Chief Peter Davis of the Galveston County Beach Patrol and The Jesse Tree’s Executive Director Ted Hanley and the Director of Programs and Services, David Mitchell. Recognizing the spectrum of needs for a family in the throes of a tragedy, such as a drowning, Peter asked a few questions about how The Jesse Tree mobilizes resources for those in need. Ted and David explained the process of “Resource Coordination” to provide holistic care to those in need and everyone realized the possibility and benefits of collaboration.

Vic Maceo, Director of the Galveston County Beach Patrol called a meeting that included members of the Park Board, The Jesse Tree, the Beach patrol, and the Ministerial Alliance and the project was born.

Each incident that calls The SSN to action provides an opportunity to learn how to better assist the family in crisis. Translation, ministry, grief counseling, accommodations, meals, and negotiations with the County Coroner, foreign consulates, and funeral directors have all become standard procedures for the SSN. Community patrons have generously contributed motel rooms, meals, “Compassion Kits” (coolers of juice, ice, snacks, towels, sun block, and umbrellas) as resources to assist the families. Each year, we pray that no drowning will occur, but the SSN will be there to assist if needed.

Community Health Fairs

Galveston Island Beach Patrol participates in various local community health fairs whose common goal is public education. At these fairs, we can provide beach and water safety information in the form of short lectures, videos, brochures, flyers, wristbands, and coloring books.

Some examples of previous health fairs in which we have participated include:

  • Fishin’ 4 Fun on Galveston Island
  • Gulf Health Care Center’s Safety Fair

If you are a community health representative interested in having GIBP attend an event, please contact

Hotel Water Safety Information

Galveston Island Beach Patrol has partnered with many island hotels and motels to increase the reach of our public education efforts. We seek to educate visitors about water safety information through brochures, water safety videos, and information booths at local hotels.

If you are a hotel owner and are interested in allowing us to provide water safety information to your visitors, please contact

Flag Warning System

Click here to learn more.

“Safe Place” Location for Kids

Click here to learn more.

Beach Wheelchair Program

Click here to learn more.

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