Pool Lifesaving skills for regional WA

25 May 2016

Royal Life Saving Society WA’s Remote Aboriginal Swimming Pool managers gathered for their annual workshop last week, following a busy and fruitful season at their pools.

The workshop, facilitated by Royal Life Saving’s General Manager Community Relations, Greg Tate, was designed to enable the pool managers to debrief and discuss the outcomes they’ve seen in their remote communities over the past 9 months, while also learning new skills and information to assist them next season.

Trent Hotchkin, General Manager Swimming and Water Safety Education, discussed programming updates for the new season, while Tony Head from LIWA talked about maintenance of the pools.

This year there was also a special training session which saw the remote pool managers learn vital skills in Pool Lifesaving, as they work to improve the swimming and water safety education of children in their communities.

Jacqui Forbes from Yandeyarra, Jamie O’Donohue from Warmun, Bernie Egan from Bidyadanga, Aaron Jacobs from Fitzroy Crossing, Micheal English from Burringurrah and Tracye Sykes from Jigalong attended a Pool Lifesaving Development Session at Exmouth’s Paltridge Memorial Swimming Pool on Wednesday 18th May, where they were taught by WA’s State Pool Lifesaving Coach Sarah Hamilton.

Recent data revealed that children in regional and remote areas of WA are 5 times more likely to drown that those in the Perth metro area. Between 2003 and 2013 28 per cent of drowning deaths in 5-14 year age group involved Aboriginal children. 

The Royal Life Saving Society WA is working hard to address these statistics, by focusing attention on swimming and lifesaving programs for children in regional and remote areas, with a special focus on remote aboriginal communities.

Last week’s Pool Lifesaving workshop has armed the remote pool managers with the hands on experience and knowledge they will need to incorporate these skills into their current Junior Lifeguard Club program in WA’s remote areas. 

The Junior Lifeguard Club offers a unique aquatic alternative for those who want to be challenged and extend the skills they have learned in their Swim and Survive lessons. The program is a modified version of Pool Lifesaving for children, including events such as the manikin tow, line throw, swimming with obstacles and initiatives that teach the core skills of rescues, swimming and lifesaving.

The Junior Lifeguard Club and the sport of Pool Lifesaving are proudly supported by the Department of Sport and Recreation.

To find out more about Pool Lifesaving click here.

To find out more about our Remote Aboriginal Swimming Pools project click here.