The challenge

 

Drowning is a big problem in Vietnam.

Ministry of Health reports that 16 people drown every day in Vietnam, a rate ten times that of developed countries. Although this number is shocking, the World Health Organisation reports that this is a conservative estimate.

Drowning is the leading cause of death by injury for children in Vietnam.

There are many factors that contribute to these numbers, including:

  • Vietnam has thousands of miles of waterways, including 2000km of coastine which is vulnerable to extreme tides and the monsoon season. Flash flooding is a regular occurrence, particularly in rural and mountainous areas.
  • Swimming and water safety education is limited, with a shortage of qualified swimming teachers, few safe places for children to learn to swim, and water safety not being part of the curriculum.
  • Children are often unsupervised when parents have to work, especially during the school holidays. Approximately 50% of the population lives in rural areas where large rice paddies and other bodies of water are close to homes.

Our mission is to provide children with survival swimming skills that could save their life, as well as water safety education to help them make good choices around water – especially when unsupervised.