Swim for Fruit fun for Yandeyarra children

1 February 2021

Children from the remote Pilbara Aboriginal community of Yandeyarra enjoyed their fill of fresh fruit and activity during Term Four 2020, through Royal Life Saving WA and Healthway’s Go for 2&5 Swim for Fruit program.

An Aboriginal girl with an orange in her mouthThe Swim for Fruit program encourages children in regional communities across Western Australia to swim laps at their local pool and rewards them with a healthy afternoon tea following each session. In addition to fruit, participants can earn a whole range of incentives such as goggles, Swim & Survive packs and t-shirts.

During Term Four 206 children participated in Swim for Fruit at Yandeyarra, with pool manager Sandra McKenzie facilitating the program.

Swim for Fruit first began in Jigalong in 2009 before expanding to other regional and remote communities. It has been successful in engaging Aboriginal children in swimming and increasing fruit consumption. This is largely due to the strong relationships pool managers have created within the community.

Trent Hotchkin, Royal Life Saving WA’s Senior Manager Education says programs like Swim for Fruit are of huge importance in remote and regional communities “Recent data shows that Aboriginal children are 14 times more likely to be involved in a fatal drowning incident than non-Aboriginal children in our state. Overall, half of children who fatally drowned over the past ten years were Aboriginal. A review of drowning data indicates limited water safety awareness combined with alarmingly low participation levels in swimming and water safety programs as key factors.”

Royal Life Saving WA is thankful for the partnership of Healthway in assisting us to provide Swim for Fruit in communities right across our state. The program at Yandeyarra was also made possible through the support of Principal Community Partner BHP.

Click below for more details on the Go for 2&5 Swim for Fruit Program.

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