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Swim to Survive Day: free drowning prevention courses in July for Vancouver youth

June 27 2018

“We’re pleased to once again support this critical program at the height of summer, equipping children and youth with the skills to safely enjoy our pools and beaches,” says Park Board Chair Stuart Mackinnon.

Girl wearing a life jacket

The Vancouver Park Board and the BC and Yukon Lifesaving Society are once again joining forces this summer to train Vancouver youth in essential drowning prevention skills as part of the program, Swim to Survive. 

Register online

Free Swim to Survive courses are being offered for to up to 672 Vancouver children and youth on Wednesday, July 18 at New Brighton Pool.

Youth aged 7 to 18 can register for one of three two hour courses offered that day. Spaces fill up quickly so register now to reserve your child’s spot! 

Register for the Swim to Survive Day

Be safe around water

“We’re pleased to once again support this critical program at the height of summer, equipping children and youth with the skills to safely enjoy our pools and beaches,” says Park Board Chair Stuart Mackinnon. 

Over the past four years, more than 3,000 elementary school students have completed Swim to Survive training at Vancouver Park Board pools across the city. Swim to Survive is not a replacement for swimming lessons, but an important step to being safe around water.

It covers the minimum skills needed to survive a fall into deep water:

  • Roll into deep water
  • Tread water for one minute
  • Swim 50 metre 

July 15 to 21, 2018 is National Drowning Prevention Week

The event coincides with National Drowning Prevention Week - a nation-wide initiative spearheaded by Lifesaving Society Canada. 

“The Lifesaving Society is pleased to again partner with the Vancouver Park Board to provide these important lifesaving skills to children and youth. We see a continual decrease in the number of drownings in BC and we know that more Swim to Survive training will help to continue that trend,” said Dale Miller, Executive Director, Lifesaving Society BC & Yukon Branch.

It is estimated that half of Canadian children never take formal swimming lessons. If every child could pass the Swim to Survive standard, it would reduce the number of drownings by half. 

There have been 19 reported drownings reported in British Columbia for 2018 so far. Drowning remains the second leading cause of preventable death in Canada. Swim to Survive teaches water smart behaviours in time for young people to make better choices around water. 

The Lifesaving Society  provides programs, products and services designed to prevent drowning, save lives and prevent water-related injury through boating safety training programs and public education. Each year, more than one million Canadians participate in the Society’s programs.