​$1 million for water safety education and training

Issued: 2 November 2017

With temperatures rising and summer just around the corner, the NSW Minister for Emergency Services Troy Grant has announced $1 million in water safety grants to help prevent drowning deaths.

Mr Grant said this round of funding benefits culturally and linguistically diverse groups, parents of infants and young children and regional communities.

"Our Water Safety Community Grants program means more people - from Bondi to Brewarrina and Coonamble to the Central Coast - will be better prepared for summer on our waterways," Mr Grant said.

"We're working to improve access to water safety education and build water confidence and skills so communities right across NSW can safely enjoy our beaches, rivers, lakes and swimming pools.

"It doesn't matter if you're a novice or an expert around water, if English is your first or second language, or you're three or sixty-three. We need everyone to take water safety seriously if we are to avoid a tragic summer like the last."

Mr Grant said he was committed to working with water safety organisations, community groups and research bodies to better prevent drowning deaths.

"This $1 million investment is being shared across initiatives such as new technology, swimming lessons, CPR training and school programs, and will reach coastal and in-land regions," Mr Grant said.

Over the past ten months, the NSW Government has taken a number of steps to improve water safety including:

  • Investing $2.2 million in water safety grants to reduce the incidence of drowning across NSW;
  • Launching a water safety public awareness campaign: "Get Water Safe - Not Sorry" in partnership with peak water safety bodies;
  • Commissioning Royal Life Saving NSW to develop a detailed analysis of drowning deaths over summer 2016/17 used to inform drowning prevention strategies;
  • Hosting the inaugural Water Safety Forum at Parliament House, where water safety practitioners, rescue organisations, academics and community groups to collectively review the latest data and share insights and ideas; and
  • Granting $4 million to Surf Life Saving NSW to help enhance vital lifesaving equipment at the 129 Surf Life Saving clubs across NSW.

In the last financial year, there were 93 drowning deaths in NSW, and between last Christmas and 2 January tragically 17 people lost their lives on our waterways.

For further information on the Water Safety Grants program please visit: http://www.watersafety.nsw.gov.au/Documents/Programs-and-applications/water-safety-fund-community-grants-2017-18.pdf.

Afghan Fajar Association Incorporated (AFAIC) - Swim2Survive 2018
Swimming lessons, water safety workshops, rock fishing safety, swimming teacher training and first aid training for Afghan and CALD communities in the Campbelltown LGA.
BEST Employment Ltd - Platypus Paddlers Water-Safe Program
A 12 month swim safe skills program for infants, toddlers and parents in disadvantaged communities in northern NSW.
Gymea Community Aid & Information Service - Sutherland Shire, Water Safety Challenge
A water safety program including swimming lessons, beach safety and first aid/CPR for new arrivals and CALD communities in the Sutherland LGA.
Homebush Boys High School Parents & Citizens' Association - Swimming Lessons for Refugee and Disadvantaged Youth
Swimming lessons and first aid training incorporating the Swim Safe Swim Sober resource for refugee and disadvantaged youth at Homebush Boys High School and Strathfield South High School.
Manning Valley Neighbourhood Services - Water Safety for Migrants on the Mid North Coast
A water safety program including survival swimming and ocean awareness for CALD communities on the Mid North Coast.
Multicultural Council of Wagga Wagga - 'Learn to Swim Safe Today, Don't let the chance float away'
Initiatives to build knowledge and skills around how to engage safely in and around the water, including how to identify potential dangers and respond in emergency situations for members from the migrant and international student populations in the Riverina.
Police Citizens Youth Clubs NSW Ltd/Dubbo Youth Foundation - Learn to Swim and Inland Water Safety Training in Remote Aboriginal Communities
Delivering learn to swim and inland water safety training to primary school children living in the remote Aboriginal communities of Wilcannia, Menindee, Bourke, Brewarrina, Walgett, Coonamble and Gulargambone.
Royal Life Saving Society NSW Branch - Early Childhood Pool Safety Initiative
An educational resource initiative developed to address the fatal and non-fatal drownings of 0-5 year olds around backyard swimming pools targeting young children 3-5 years via childcare services and the parents and carers of these children.
Surf Life Saving NSW - Emergency Response Beacons at High Risk Unpatrolled Locations
Deployment of emergency response beacons at high risk unpatrolled locations so that rescue assets and emergency services can be deployed in a timely manner.
Surf Life Saving Central Coast - Saturated Surf Education program
A surf education initiative incorporating primary school presentations, surf fun days, rip awareness campaigns, summer surf education programs, International Students surf awareness programs, Indigenous Beach to Backyards Water Safety Program and high school surf survival programs.
Surf Life Saving Far South Coast - Surf awareness and education programs
A surf education and awareness initiative incorporating an intensive school holiday program, primary school programs and rip awareness and safety sessions for tourists and residents.
Surfing NSW - Stage 4 of the Surfers Rescue 24/7
The Surfing NSW Surfers Rescue 24/7 (SR24/7) program is a course designed to train NSW surfers in board rescue techniques and nationally accredited CPR.


*Each application for the Water Safety Community Fund was assessed by an independent advisory panel of NSW Government agency representatives with responsibility for water safety policy and programs.*