With summer just weeks away, Wingecarribee Shire Council and the Royal Life Saving Society of Australia are joining forces to launch a dedicated children’s water swim safety program entitled, ‘Swim and Survive’.
Starting Monday 2 November the two-term swim program is aimed at both pre-school and school aged children.
Council’s Pools and Facilities Supervisor Laura Hill explained the concept of the program.
“The summer school holidays are just weeks away and this means children will start to make their way to pools, beaches and swimming holes looking to cool off,” Ms Hill said.
“This program has been specifically designed to help teach our children basic water survival skills which may get them or someone else out of trouble.”
Royal Life Saving research shows that one in five children will leave primary school without the skills to swim 50 metres or stay afloat for two minutes even if their life depended on it.
“Considering our proximity to beaches, pools and dams, all Australian children should be provided with the opportunity to learn basic swimming and water safety skills,” Ms Hill added.
The Swim and Survive program is split into two categories. The ‘Courage’ program for preschool children aged 3 to 5 years and the ‘Active’ course for 5 to 14 year olds. The Courage course focusses on building confidence in and around the water and developing basic survival skills whilst children enrolled in the Active program will learn more advanced water safety skills and techniques.
Some of the skills taught will include water familiarisation, proper water entry and exit, floating, breathing and rescue skills.
Lessons will be held for 7 weeks from 2 November to 19 December and again from 1 February to early March 2016.
“Hopefully the children will never have to use the skills learnt from the course and they will associate swimming as a fun, safe and healthy activity,” said Ms Hill.
Swim and Survive is a national swimming and water safety initiative of the Royal Life Saving Society of Australia.
Free assessments and enrolments will take place at the Bowral Swimming Centre on Monday 19 and 26 October 2015. Courses will begin at the Bowral Swimming Centre from November and Mittagong Swimming Centre in January.
For more information including times, costs and locations contact Council’s Swim School Coordinator on 4861 2598, mobile 0409 930 645 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Bowral Swimming Centre is located on the corner of Mittagong Road and Oxley Drive, Bowral and is open seven days a week.