Dak Lak province is initiating a programme to help prevent drowning accidents among children, including free-of-charge swimming classes, as well as calling for investment from enterprises to build new swimming pools used for such practice swimming lessons.

This summer, Dak Lak province is focusing its efforts on bringing attention to drowning hazards. In the wake of many water-related incidents, local authorities have incorporated swimming lessons into the province’s summer extracurricular activities.

Tran Diep Giang Linh, pupil of Phan Chu Trinh Secondary School, Ea Kar district, Dak Lak province: "The programme is an opportunity for us to learn more about water safety, as well as equipping us with useful skills to help others in case of an accident."

Bui Huu Thanh Cat, Deputy Director of Education and Training Department, Dak Lak province: "The number one cause of drowning incidents among children and adolescents in Dak Lak province is insufficient swimming skills and the lack of knowledge on how to prevent drowning. The promotion of swimming lessons and the equipment of knowledge regarding water hazards are becoming increasingly essential to reduce the cases of drowning amongst children."

Besides free swimming lessons, localities are calling for investment in building public swimming pool. By the end of 2014, the Hoa Phat pool was the first of its kind to go into commission in the area. After four years, the number of pools has increased to 19.

Nguyen Duc Hoa, owner of Hoa Phat swimming pool, Cu M’Gar district, Dak Lak province: "At first I didn’t think of opening a pool here, but after reading news of several child drowning incidents, I decided to build one to raise water safety awareness."

To encourage investment in swimming pools, Cu M’Gar district has exempted investors from the land rental for the first five years. Over 150 physical education teachers for the district are also required to have basic swimming skills and knowledge.

Truong Phu Long, pupil of Nguyen Tat Thanh Secondary School, Cu M’gar district, Dak Lak province: "I have been learning swimming for around 10 days now, I love swimming a lot because it helps me to become healthier and save myself from potential dangers."

Vuong Thi Huong, a parent in Cu M’gar district, Dak Lak province: "Firstly, I hope that my children will have a happy summer vacation. Secondly, I expect that my children will be able to learn more useful skills to prevent instances of drowning."

For the drowning preventative solutions to be successfully implemented and achieve results, parents and school officials are recommended to warn children of the impending danger and risks of water hazards. -VNA