City of Canning kids get river ready

17 April 2019

Multicultural children in the City of Canning have had the opportunity to take part in an important water safety program this week, to ensure they are equipped to safely participate in aquatic activities in our inland waterways.

A swim instructor standing by the pool watching students in the water waving for assistanceOf the 27 people who lost their lives to drowning in WA during 2017/18, 22 percent drowned at inland waterway locations, including rivers, creeks, streams and dams. In addition, over the past 10 years 40% of all WA’s drowning deaths involved people who were born overseas.

The Canning “River Ready” program - supported by the City of Canning through the Community Partnership Fund, and jointly promoted and run by Royal Life Saving WA and Communicare – is part of an effort to reduce drowning statistics in our multicultural communities. With the abundance of recreational waterways available for use in WA it’s vital that new arrivals to our state have an opportunity to learn the risks of inland waterway use and how to stay safe in these environments.

The program was expected to be held at the Kent Street Weir, but due to unfriendly weather conditions the in-water component was moved to the Cannington Leisureplex. However, on Monday the 15 participants and their parents were still able to observe the river conditions at the Weir and learn about the risks associated with river swimming.Three multicultural girls in the water floating on their backs with kickboards

The children then got into the pool at Cannington Leisureplex to learn rescue and lifesaving skills. The program was run by experienced Swim & Survive instructors who showed the risks associated with river swimming and what to be aware of. In addition, participants were able to practice rescues, safe entries and CPR so they have the skills required to act in case of an emergency. Participants were also treated to some healthy snacks, and a Swim & Survive pack which includes a towel, cap and goggles.

As part of the program 20 parents and caregivers of children participated in a Heart Beat Club course at Cannington Leisureplex, learning basic first aid and CPR skills so they have skills to be able to save a life in case of an emergency.

Royal Life Saving WA would like to thank the instructors, Communicare and the City of Canning for making this program possible.

For more information on the City of Canning Community Participation Fund, please click the link below.

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