Swimming lessons return for Port Hedland children

2 June 2020

With the COVID-19 pandemic forcing the closure of aquatic centres across the nation in late March Royal Life Saving has been concerned about the impact this has had on water safety education for Australian children. Building swimming and water safety skills in school aged children is vital work and the single most important investment we can make as a community to prevent drowning.

As aquatic centres across WA have begun to re-open over the past two weeks, within the guidelines set down by the State Government’s stage two restrictions, many centres are now allowing patrons to book time for lap swimming, but few have yet reactivated their children’s swimming lessons largely due to the challenge posed by social distancing within the normal swimming lesson format.

However Royal Life Saving WA is pleased to see that Port Hedland Leisure has made children’s swimming lessons a priority in their re-opening, welcoming children in stage 5 and above back to swimming lessons from Monday 25th May, with special guidelines in place to meet Government health regulations.

Town of Port Hedland’s Hon. Commissioner Fred Reibeling says Port Hedland Leisure lives by the mantra fitness for all and has been itching to welcome the community back to their facilities. “We’ve had to make some changes to how swimming lessons are usually delivered to keep our little learners and families safe. Each student is allocated to their own lane and all instructions are issued from the pool deck, minimising physical interaction. Our staff also busily sanitise surfaces before and after lessons are conducted, wiping away nasty germs. We remind our students that physical distancing is key, and that coughs and sneezes need to be directed into a closed elbow.”

South Hedland Aquatic Centre re-opened to the public on the 18th May, and regular patrons showed a keen interest in knowing when swimming lessons would return. Hon. Commissioner Reibeling says it was clear the local community wanted lessons to resume as soon as possible. “Leisure staff got together and mapped out how lessons could be delivered in a safe, socially distanced way while still imparting the lifesaving information of a learn to swim lesson. The return of the lessons is testament to the passion and adaptability of Leisure staff, and we could not be prouder of the team and our community. People have responded positively to the need to change how we do business during COVID-19 times – thank you Hedland!”

Royal Life Saving WA congratulates the Town of Port Hedland and their Leisure team for the proactive way they have ensured this vital swimming and water safety education is made available for local children. We look forward to seeing swimmers both young and old return to public swimming pools right across Western Australia over the coming weeks and months.

For a complete list of Royal Life Saving Endorsed Swim Schools across Western Australia click the link below.

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