Nghe An Province in north-central Vietnam will provide funding of over VND25.8 billion (US$1.091 million) for its localities and schools to set up mobile swimming pools and run swimming courses, as part of its efforts to reduce drownings among children.
The province passed a resolution stipulating policies on developing swimming pools and teaching local children swimming skills at a People’s Council meeting held on Friday.
Under this resolution, children aged 6-15 will be taught how to swim and equipped with anti-drowning knowledge to ensure their own safety.
Of the financial aid backed by the state budget, more than VND23 billion ($972,900) will serve the development of 281 mobile swimming pools.
Besides, over VND2.28 billion ($96,400) is earmarked for organizing swimming courses dedicated to children in 76 disadvantaged communes during the 2024-25 period.
This move is expected to reduce drownings among children by 5-10 percent.
|Members of the Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union in Que Phong District, Nghe An Province, north-central Vietnam set up a swimming pool at a spring to teach local kids how to swim. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre|
The province took various measures for drowning prevention, but its drowning rate remained high.
According to a report of the provincial Department of Labor, War Invalids, and Social Affairs, the province reported 293 child drowning deaths between 2016 and 2022 and 18 deaths in the first half of 2023.
The north-central province has 216 swimming pools meeting the size requirements and 76 mixed swimming pools made by local residents to teach kids how to swim.
Most of these pools, however, were built by private firms for commercial purposes and they are located in central areas where parents can well afford their kids’ swimming classes.
Meanwhile, children in rural, mountainous and other disadvantaged regions have limited access to swimming courses.
Speaking at the meeting, Thai Thanh Quy, secretary of the provincial Party Committee and chairman of the provincial People’s Council, asked relevant agencies and local authorities to closely work with local households to adopt anti-drowning measures effectively.
They were also told to study a plan to incorporate swimming into the school curriculum in the long run.