In June, tens of thousands of young swimmers across the globe took part in the 2019 World’s Largest Swimming Lesson (WLSL), which teaches kids and parents lifesaving water safety skills.
The 10th annual WLSL event took place over a 24-hour period at more than 700 facilities pools, in 29 countries, including two Canadian provinces (11 locations).
The event also serves to build awareness about the critical importance of teaching children to swim to prevent drowning. Program organizers are working to connect the dots between the real risk of childhood drowning, the need for basic water competency skills, and the fact parents must remain vigilant at all times when supervising children in and around water.
“Kids who start taking swim lessons early are taught basic skills and important safety rules for being around water,” said Rowdy Gaines, a three-time Olympic gold medalist. “Ensuring every child learns to swim is one of the most crucial layers of protection a parent can provide.”
The Canadian aquatic facilities that participated in this year’s WLSL include:
- Bingemans Big Splash (Kitchener, Ont.);
- Splash Works-Canada’s Wonderland (Vaughan, Ont.);
- Southland Leisure Centre (Calgary, Alta.);
- Village Square Leisure Centre (Calgary, Alta.);
- City of Red Deer (Red Deer, Alta.);
- Dundonald Hall Fitness & Aquatic Centre (Petawawa, Ont.);
- Wally World-East Park (London, Ont.);
- Okotoks Recreation Centre (Okotoks, Alta.);
- Taber Aquafun Centre (Taber, Alta.);
- Birdseye Pool (Port Perry, Ont.); and
- World Waterpark-West Edmonton Mall (Edmonton, Alta.).