Dianella students enjoy Swim and Survive classes

11 March 2019

Drowning remains one of the leading causes of preventable death in children worldwide, and for those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds a lack of swimming and water safety education can put them at even greater risk.

A group of multicultural children in the pool holding kickboardsStatistics from a national report on drowning shows that 347 people drowned in WA between 2005/06 and 2015/16, of which almost 40% were born overseas - the highest proportion of any state of territory.

Royal Life Saving WA is determined to ensure all Western Australians have access to vital swimming and water safety education, and recently 200 multicultural students from Dianella Secondary College were able to participate in a 5-week Swim & Survive and 1-week Junior Lifeguard program, thanks to the Royal Life Saving Australia Swim and Survive Fund.

The In-Term program has been facilitated by RLSSWA and Dianella Secondary College for the past four years as part of the Swim and Survive Access and Equity program, with participants learning valuable lifesaving skills and knowledge on swimming and water safety.A group of multicultural boys standing in the pool along the edge with red kickboards

The program is particularly important for schools like Dianella Secondary College, which is located in the City of Stirling. Dianella has a very high multicultural student demographic, with 2011 Australian Bureau of Statistics data showing that 38.5% of the population in the area were born overseas. The City of Stirling is ranked in the top 10 most Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Local Government area in Western Australia.

The program at Dianella has broken down barriers to participation for multicultural students in this area, with secondary college participants along with the Education Support Centre and local primary school students actively participating in swimming and water safety lessons. The program also has ‘girls only’ sessions, so participants with particular cultural needs are able to freely participate in a comfortable environment.

If you'd like to know more about Swim and Survive Access and Equity please click the link below.

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If you'd like to support programs like this by making a donation to the Swim and Survive fund you can donate at the link below.

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