Two Mackay swim schools are offering free lessons as part of Learn2Swim Week.
Two Mackay swim schools are offering free lessons as part of Learn2Swim Week. Contributed

Swim schools launch free lessons in bid to curb drowning

IN A BID to curb childhood drowning, two Mackay swim schools are offering free swimming lessions.

During Learn2Swim week next month, Pat Wright Swim School and Happy Days Swimming and Fitness are offering free lessons to children under five.

Shane Wood from Poolwerx Mackay said the response from local swim schools had been fantastic.

"Last year there were tragically 29 drowning deaths in children aged 0-4 years, with three quarters of these deaths resulting from a fall into the water," he said.

"That is why it is so important to familiarise kids with water at an early age and swimming lessons can provide under-fives with the lifesaving skills they need to know to get themselves out of trouble."

Mr Wood said he was urging parents to take advantage of the lessons for their children and that children can become familiar with water as early as 4-6 months.

Children who have attended regular swimming lessons have the skills they need to get themselves safely back to the side of the pool.

"Our survey of parents who participated in Learn2Swim Week last year showed that 60 per cent went on to enrol their under-fives in regular swimming lessons," Mr Wood said.

Program ambassador Laurie Lawrence said Mackay swim schools were again showing they were at the forefront of water safety awareness in young children.

"Learn2Swim Week has been running for four years now and each year we get more and more swim schools participating," he said.

"Swim schools like Pat Wright Swim School and Happy Days Swimming and Fitness are helping us to reach our goal of zero drownings in under-fives.

"I encourage all parents with children under five to take advantage of this fantastic opportunity."

Learn2Swim Week will run from 2 - 9 October. Parents can visit http://learn2swimweek.com/ to find out more.


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