Twenty boys and 20 girls from the Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Centre’s holiday program started swimming classes.
The classes were run by the Royal Life Saving Society WA at The Swim School on Hughie Edwards Drive.
RLSSWA inclusion co-ordinator Jen Mickle said a review of drowning data showed people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) backgrounds represented 35 per cent of drownings in WA over the past five years.
‘Many children from CaLD backgrounds have never had the opportunity to participate in a swimming and water safety program,’ she said.
‘This program provides essential skills and knowledge that many WA children may take for granted.’
The program gave children aged five to 14 an intensive week of lessons, breaking down barriers to swimming and water safety lessons through the RLSSWA’s swim and survive access and equity partnership with BHP Billiton Iron Ore.
The society will also target more than 600 at-risk young adults through the program, offering them swimming and water safety lessons, and give 1500 participants water safety awareness through talks and resuscitation courses.