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Water safety plan

Dawn Gibson
Wednesday, January 22, 2014

THE Water Safety Council of Fiji is currently working with Australia's Shane Daw to put together the country's first collaborative strategic plan on water safety in Fiji.

The plan, which is expected to be complete in the next few weeks, will be an attempt to create a standard around water safety specific to Fiji.

"So far we're looking at some programs about water safety, such as trying to work on initiatives to help stop the drowning toll which has just been climbing over the recent years," explained Mr Daw, general manager commercial operations for Australia-based Surf Life Saving.

"It's about ways in which we can put in place programs that are going to be very integral to get children to be aware of it and they can then pass the message on to mum and dad and so on, so it's changing a cultural understanding about water safety."

Mr Daw has carried out very similar strategies in South Australia, Bali and Indonesia and says getting relevant stakeholders involved is key to progress.

"That way it becomes about trying to get a standard for people in villages, those at home, those in hotels — that way there's a standard around water safety to help protect people and to ensure that the drowning toll can be reduced.

"We can share ideas that way because sometimes using a holistic program means one organisation may not have enough funds but if we all come together it could make things more achievable."

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