A pilot swimming confidence program for CALD women by a CALD woman.
WHAT – A 12 week ‘learn to swim’ pilot program targeted at 20 CALD (culturally and linguistically diverse) women encouraging them to overcome barriers to swimming.
WHY – Swimming is an inherent part of modern Australian culture. As a regular swimmer myself, I see the lack of diversity in our community swimming pools. Additionally, the risk of drowning is higher among ethnic minority communities. Many CALD women hesitate to organise swimming lessons for themselves due to perceived cultural, social and financial barriers. Other hesitancy factors include fear of drowning, aquaphobia, cultural modesty requirements and language barriers.
HOW – The program will include swimming lessons provided by volunteer AUSTSWIM trainers, interaction with adult swimming teachers and leaners and people who have overcome aquaphobia. The program will also address social issues that are unique to a number of CALD women such as managing their hair during and after swimming, body image perception, modest swimwear (if culturally appropriate) and access to a wide range of swim wear options.
OUTCOMES – Swimming is a great and healthy opportunity to be socially inclusive. My goal is to break stereotypes and help CALD women break social and financial barriers to swimming.
By providing an avenue for CALD women to participate in swimming activities, it will foster a sense of belonging and community. The A Splash of Colour program will also promote active and healthy activities in marginalised communities to help them feel safe and confident when using community and private swimming pools.
For more information on the historical relationship between swimming and people of colour, please visit the links below:
Funded by Newcastle (September 2022)