The State Government has announced additional funding for swimming and water safety lessons, following the two tragic drownings in Hobsons Bay over summer, which contributed to Victoria’s highest drowning toll for 20 years.
Hobsons Bay can sometimes see strong northerly winds along its coastline, which keeps water police and local lifeguards busy over summer, often rescuing young children, older adults and members of our multicultural communities unfamiliar with swimming.
Minister for Sport John Eren announced $1.2 million for Aquatics and Recreation Victoria to continue running the VICSWIM program, which runs swimming and water safety lessons in Altona and Laverton, during the high-risk and popular January school holiday period.
“Victoria is blessed with wonderful waterways, beaches and pools, but too many lives are lost because people don’t have the right water skills – this program will help turn that tide,” said Mr Eren.
The funding will enable VICSWIM to continue for the next three years and is in addition to the State Government contributions of $1.9 million to improve safety at all Victorian public swimming pools and $9.8 million for the Swimming in Schools Program.