Port Hedland children learn to Swim and Survive before summer

10 December 2019

As the summer weather sets in across the state Royal Life Saving WA is working hard to ensure all children have an opportunity to learn vital swimming and water safety skills, so they can safely enjoy water activities. Unfortunately, some children miss out on regular swimming education due to factors such as location and socio-economic status.

Our Swim and Survive Access and Equity team has developed a relationship with Port Hedland’s Youth Involvement Council (YIC), to ensure at-risk children in Port Hedland have access to these vital skills. YIC is a youth organisation based in South Hedland, providing after-school programs to young people in Hedland and surrounding areas who are, more often than not, considered to be at risk, homeless (or at imminent risk of homelessness), disadvantaged or in need of general support.

Ten children aged 6-8 years, from YIC’s Deadly Hearts program, have been enjoying Swim and Survive lessons each Friday throughout this school term, at the South Hedland Aquatic Centre, thanks to funding from Principal Community Partner BHP. The program aims to ensure they have an opportunity to learn or build on their basic swimming skills ahead of the summer holidays.

The lessons are conducted in small groups with qualified Swim and Survive instructor Abbra Slocome, who has been working with the group right through Term Four. Group co-ordinator, Nathan picks the children up from school, gets them to the pool, ensures they have all the gear they need, and makes sure they’ve had a snack before their lesson. He then takes them home afterwards. Without this support and the partnership with YIC it’s likely these children would miss out on learning these important skills, so we are extremely grateful for their support.

The children will attend their final lesson this Friday, receiving their stage 2 or 3 Swim and Survive certificates! You can read more about our Swim and Survive Access and Equity program in regional WA at the link below.

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