As children become mobile they begin to explore their surroundings, however their sense of curiosity and adventure is not matched by an understanding of the possible risks and dangers.

Drowning Prevention Auckland offers parents and caregivers the opportunity to learn more about keeping their under 5s safe in, on and around water so that we can work together to reduce the risk of drowning.

Parent / caregiver in water with under 5

With funding support from Water Safety New Zealand we provide water safety workshops which will enable parents and caregivers to:

  • Develop their own water competence – knowledge, understanding and skills.
  • Be more confident and skilled to provide essential water safety learning for their pre-school children, and to implement appropriate protective practices to keep their children safer in, on and near water.
  • Experience fun and safe activities with their under 5s in frequently accessed water environments.

While water can be fun, exciting and educational, it is potentially dangerous too and unfortunately in New Zealand our drowning statistics reflect this.

Most children aged 0-4 years of age who drown do so around the home environment with almost half in home pools. An emerging trend is an increase in drownings in environments outside, but close to the home, such as ponds, drains, farm troughs, creeks, and estuaries (WSNZ, 2020).

Group of young kids on the beach with adult supervision

The Early Childhood Water Safety Workshops include several components. The first is an indoor workshop to develop knowledge and understanding of water competence and appropriate protective practices to keep children safer around water. Parents and caregivers will then have the opportunity to develop their own and their child/childrens’ water confidence in a controlled environment. These follow-on in-water sessions take place in a pool and/or open water environments, such as the beach, creek, waterfall, pond, stream, and/or lake.

The open water environment sessions are an invaluable part of the programme and give people a real sense of awareness of the dangers and the risk minimisation strategies available when taking young children to these types of environments.

Early Childhood Centres can also have their children participate in fun, interaction and age appropriate sessions which enable the children to know what to do in a water environment, understand why safety measures are in place and why being safe around water at home and out and about is important.

DPA has the capacity for individuals and groups to book the parent/caregiver workshops and ECE childrens’ sessions throughout March, April and May. Get together with a group of friends, or ask your early childhood centre to organise a group of parents to benefit from this opportunity.

Please enquire to: Lynley Stewart [email protected] 021 0820 4183