Swim for Fruit makes a splash in Geraldton

19 April 2016

Children at the Geraldton Aquarena and Mullewa Swimming Pool enjoyed Swim and Survive lessons during term one as part of our Go for 2 and 5 Swim for Fruit program.

Go for 2 and 5 Swim for Fruit is an incentive-based program, supported by Healthway, which sees children rewarded for their swimming efforts by receiving a healthy afternoon tea following each session. Those achieving a prescribed amount of laps are also eligible to earn incentive prizes with goggles, Swim and Survive packs, t-shirts and flippers up for grabs.

Nine boys eating from a platter of fruit after enjoying swimming lessons as part of the Go for 2 and 5 Swim for Fruit initiative at Geraldton Aquarena

In the first week of classes only five participants attended, but word soon spread and for the majority of the term 25-30 students attended each week! The increase in numbers was due largely to promotions on the City of Greater Geraldton Facebook page, Radio Mama local radio, flyers, advertisements in school newsletters and plenty of word of mouth.

Aquarena Swim School swimming instructor Teri taught the participants mostly water safety and survival skills. Survival backstroke was also taught each week as this is essential to children living a coastal lifestyle. Older participants also learned freestyle and breathing techniques and stroke correction.

Some of the children’s favourite activities were wearing pool noodles like a scarf and doing survival backstroke, holding the noodle between their legs doing freestyle, horse and cart noodle races, chain races, and ride the noodle races at the end of each class.

The children attending the Go for 2 and 5 Swim for Fruit sessions ranged in age from as young as five years from local primary schools, to Clontarf Football Academy boys up to the age of 17. 60-70% of those attending the program were from an Indigenous background, which was a great result as this is the program’s target group.

There was never a scrap of food left after each session, with every single banana, strawberry, orange, pineapple, watermelon, pear, apple and even grape being gobbled up at the end of class!

Royal Life Saving Society WA is thankful to the team at Geraldton Aquarena for the efforts they put in to making the program such a success. It’s great to see these less fortunate children having the opportunity to gain vital water safety, swimming and social skills.

More information about the Go for 2 and 5 Swim for Fruit program is available at the link below.