THE people of Savusavu are utilising an opportunity of a lifetime to learn the basics of swimming and water safety from a Canadian swimmer holidaying at Daku Resort.
Daku Resort owner Delia Rothnie-Jones confirmed that young Canadian swimmer and water safety instructor Kurtis Hubert had started free week-long swimming classes for interested participants.
Mrs Jones said the opportunity gave locals the chance to learn how to teach other people the basics of swimming and water safety.
Course co-ordinator Mr Hubert said, "The class is aimed at people who already can swim as the classes teach them how to teach other people to swim.
"Just because you know how to do something yourself doesn't mean you know how to pass on that skill. So at the end of my week they will be able to teach others.
"The class also covers water safety and first aid and essential skills for any instructor.
"I am a trained lifeguard in Canada and spend my summers working at swimming pools although I am only 17-years-old. I have about 400 hours in work experience which speak volumes of my patience for the work."
Mr Hubert said he visited Fiji on a family holiday last year and enjoyed it so much that he came back.
"I have noticed that although some Fijians are good swimmers, many others are not, which surprises me as much of Fijian life is spent around the water," said Mr Hubert.
"When I read about the deaths by drowning during last February's floods in Nadi, I realised that if only more people could swim and knew about water safety, this sort of loss of lives could be avoided.
"I have also realised that although there are water instruction courses in central urban centres, it's very hard to find them on the islands." The final two courses are scheduled for next week.