Drowning Prevention
Photo Credit: NSRI

The NSRI Drowning Prevention team have touched the lives of 4 million people in South Africa, training them about the dangers of water; this year they hit record number for training people – 120,000 across all 9 provinces!


South Africa (07 September 2023) – In November 2022, statistics released by the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) painted a grim picture of the country’s drowning numbers. The study conducted between 2016 to 2021, found that 1477 South Africans, mostly young children, drown each year with this number expected to increase due to the devastating floods in KZN in 2022 which claimed the lives of an estimated 435 people.

“Teaching children how to stay safe around water is critical to reducing the burden of drownings,” said Dr Jill Fortuin who heads up the NSRI’s Drowning Prevention department.

“In August this year, we achieved a record number of 120,000 lessons taught across all 9 provinces – a huge achievement for our non-profit organisation.”

But the work does not stop there as Jill explains;

“We are well on our way to achieve our target of 750,000 this year and we are gearing up our plans to hit our goal of 1,000,000 children taught in 2024.”

The NSRI has 39 instructors in the drowning prevention team who raise awareness about the dangers of water, what to do if someone gets into trouble, how to perform bystander CPR and who to call for help. Since the project’s inception in 2006, it has reached over 4 million people with these life-saving skills.

“At a cost of just R10 to teach a child to be water-safe, it is the support and generosity of thousands of individuals and partners who have made this achievement possible and will continue to help us strive to hit that one million lesson mark in 2024,” concludes Jill.

They have made significant progress in drowning prevention through their research, as shared in August 2023. Support if these causes goes a long way in saving young and old.

Whether investing in projects like the Pink Bouys, on-site swimming centres or the swimming lessons given at community centres, we can all make a difference. To do so, you can reach out to the NSRI via the website here.

Sources: NSRI Statement
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Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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