English as as Additional Language Students learn to Swim and Survive

Royal Life Saving provides English as an Additional Language students with the opportunity to learn to Swim and Survive.

Royal Life Saving Society - Tasmania with support from the Launceston Aquatic Centre will conduct a 10 day swimming and water safety program to help young adults develop the skills and knowledge to be safe in, on and around the water.

The 70 students aged 13 -19 years, are participating in this program because many humanitarian entrants have not had the opportunity to learn about water safety and how to swim prior to their arrival in Tasmania.

“Royal Life Saving believes that every person has the right to learn basic swimming, water safety, survival and rescue skills, regardless of who they are or where they live,” said Karina Siggins, Project and Programs Officer, Royal Life Saving Society – Tasmania.

“The Royal Life Saving Swim and Survive Fund makes it possible for people who are more likely to miss out, or have missed out, to come along and learn vital swimming and lifesaving skills.”

Royal Life Saving research has found the people in our communities who are most likely to miss out on formal swimming and water safety education are those who are indigenous, from a culturally or linguistically diverse background, from a low socio-economic community, live in a regional or remote area, are newly arrived in Australia, or are living with a disability.
Sally Duay, Manager of English as an Additional Language Program said, “Swimming and water safety lessons are not just a valuable life-skill, for people newly arrived to Australia it’s such an important part of being socially included. Being able to swim and safely recreate around water opens up many new opportunities. We are delighted that our students have been provided the opportunity to participate in this program”.

From 1 July 2016 to 30 June 2017, a staggering 291 people drowned in Australia. The nation’s inland waterways continue to be the leading location for fatal drowning, accounting for 97 deaths in 2016/17, almost one third of the total.

“Playing in backyard swimming pools, picnics by the river, and splashing around at the beach are very much a part of everyday life in Australia. It’s vital for children and adults to know how to safely enjoy these areas,“ said Karina Siggins, Project and Programs Officer, Royal Life Saving Society – Tasmania.

“Swim and Survive Fund participants are taught a range of skills for different aquatic environments including personal survival skills such as floating and sculling, learning to identify hazards in different environments, and how to avoid these hazards to stay safe.”

The Swim and Survive Fund uses donations from individuals, community organisations, corporate supporters and Royal Life Saving Partner facilities across Australia to increase access to swimming and water safety education for people who are at a greater risk of drowning.

To help provide swimming and water safety lessons to children who have missed out, please click on the button below.

Media Contacts:
Karina Siggins | Project and Programs Officer| Royal Life Saving Society – Tasmania
0418 343 881   

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