16.06.22, London – Water Babies, the UK’s largest baby swimming school, will be supporting long running partner, the Royal Life Saving Society UK (RLSS UK), ahead of the charity’s Drowning Prevention Week, taking place from the 18th – 15th June 2022, organised each year to help reduce the number of accidental drownings in the UK and raise awareness of the importance of safety in the water.
As part of this year’s campaign, there will be a particular focus on children and young people, to help them establish a safe relationship with the water as early as possible. It will also aim to inspire children to have a positive future relationship with water, by understanding the mental and physical benefits that being in, on and around water brings. RLSS UK is also launching a brand-new animation for 2022 to help get lifesaving messages across to children.
According to RLSS UK research, more than 400 people die each year in the UK and Ireland from accidental drowning, with most deaths occurring in June, July, and August. The UK has seen a rise in the number of drownings over the last few years.
During Drowning Prevention Week, RLSS UK will be working through schools, leisure and the media to deliver water safety education and training. There are a range of useful resources available to pool operators and swim schools to help them to improve the public’s water safety skills and knowledge. In addition, there are a number of media resources to help share these vital messages.
Commenting on the upcoming campaign, Hannah Smith, Aquatics Director at Water Babies said: “Learning to swim is not only a lifesaving skill that saves thousands of people’s lives every year, but it’s also essential to build awareness of water safety for children and parents. We are proud to work closely each year with our partner, the RLSS UK on its Drowning Prevention Week to continue raising awareness of the importance of safety in the water.
“Sadly, drowning is the cause of one-third of accidental deaths of children under 5 in the UK, so increasing awareness and understanding of what can be done to prevent any accidents and protect babies and toddlers will ensure a safer experience at the swimming pool, whilst still having fun. And little ones are never too young to start learning this skill for life.”
Lee Heard, Charity Director at RLSS UK, said: “It’s vitally important that everyone has an understanding of water safety, especially during the summer months. Water safety education is vital and, in some instances, could be a child’s only opportunity to learn about the water, so we are delighted to be working with Water Babies to raise awareness around Drowning Prevention Week, particularly given our focus on children and young people this year.
“We believe that water safety information should be accessible to all. In an ideal world, every child would learn to swim. However, as this is not the case, our resources can be delivered in the classroom or at home, which means while there may be barriers to accessing water, every child can still benefit from water safety education – and they are never to young to start!”