Today, 25th July, marks the very first
World Drowning Prevention Day! 💦
This day was declared as part of the UN resolution on global drowning prevention and will be held every 25th July, with the first one in 2021.
An estimated 236,000 people drown every year, and drowning is among the ten leading causes of death for children and youth aged 1-24 years. More than 90% of drowning deaths occur in rivers, lakes, wells and domestic water storage vessels in low- and middle-income countries, with children and adolescents in rural areas disproportionately affected.’
SWIM Cambodia is a drowning prevention program based in Cambodia. SWIM targets children & young people who are most at risk of drowning by providing the following • Water Safety Education • Safe Rescue & CPR skills • Raising awareness of drowning issues in Cambodia • Survival Swimming Lessons (hopefully in 2022)
Drowning is a process which has three outcomes: Survival, Survival with an injury, or Death. When a child dies it is always tragic but deaths that could have been prevented are especially distressing. The huge wait of grief from child drowning grief hangs over families from the poorest communities of the world.
On average, 6 children die each day from drowning in Cambodia.
At SWIM Cambodia, we train volunteers and teachers in the delivery of water safety, safe rescue and CPR. Once education messages have been adapted to the local context, they are simple to teach and pass-on, which can be taught in the classroom and other community venues.
I’ve seen how children, young people and parents/carers enjoy 😊 these lessons as well as teachers and trainers loving their work teaching messages and lifesaving skills. Thanks to Leakena and Neath, who talked in the videos below and coordinate volunteer training for SWIM Cambodia. Along with other volunteers in the team, they give their time and expertise freely to save children’s lives. 🙏🏽
Please make some kind of commitment today, big or small to support drowning prevention. There are loads of things you can do to support drowning prevention: Raise awareness, campaign for water safety education in schools, give a pound, talk to others, start a fundraiser, write a song, make some art, share a post, gain more knowledge, find out more, volunteer some time and skills to support charities …Use this opportunity to help influence the safety of children in and around water. 💦 Please use this opportunity to do something to help save lives!
Happy World Drowning Prevention Day! Let’s make it safe and happy for children.
Every drowning is preventable. Support SWIM Cambodia to save lives
Many people in Cambodia are experiencing lockdown restrictions due to rising numbers with COVID-19. With schools closed, SWIM Cambodia cannot currently deliver water safety education. We are using this time to plan with our trustees, volunteers and delivery partners. We are also preparing for local registration to expand our reach.
We think of all those whose lives and livelihoods have been affected by the pandemic and wish the best to everyone living in Cambodia
2020, What a Year!
Due to COVID19, SWIM Cambodia has been unable to deliver any face-to-face interventions since Cambodia closed all schools in March. Cambodia has been spared the worst pandemic affects with only 364 cases and no deaths reported. What is unknown, is the impact of closed schools on child drowning. Whilst closing schools may have been successful in stopping the spread of the corona virus, we know that schools act as a protective factor in keeping children safe from drowning. Schools prevent all types of injury as well as allowing parents and carers the opportunity to work and provide for their family. COVID19 has had such a big impact on many of our lives, but we fear that floods and lock-down measures this year may have increased inequality in Cambodia.
We have spent time this year in meetings with our volunteer trainers, teachers and trustees. We have reviewed our strategy, made plans, discussed new proposal projects, compiled survey data from the last two years and kept in touch whenever we have had good WiFi. The trustees have been working on strategic plans towards national registration in Cambodia to build partnerships for integration into the public school system. One of our delivery partners, Helpcode, adapted well to the pandemic, filming and posting water safety messages online. See below, Harry Lao giving advice on spotting drowning dangers and knowing water and weather conditions before getting into water.
Good news for 2021! We need it!
It has just been announced that schools in Cambodia will reopen from 11th January 2021 to start the new academic year. This means that our delivery partners will be able to return to important delivery of water safety education. We are looking forward to getting back to teaching children and caregivers and meeting face-to-face as we hope to say goodbye to COVID19.
Thank you to all of you who have supported our work. If you would like to support our work to go further, you can donate at this link:
*RNLI et al. Aquatic Survival Programme Photos: 1. Cambodian school children line-up for a temperature check by Tang Chhin Sothy 2. Catch-up and strategy meetings with SWIM Cambodia trainers and advisors 3. Illustration by Sao Sreymao www.saosreymao.com 4. Children enjoy copying water safety messages.