With funds raised by the Vietnam Jungle Marathon trail race, Topas has continued funding work to prevent children from drowning in Thanh Hoa province, where the race is held. The latest training held this summer had a great impact on the swimming ability and water safety knowledge of 200 children in the area.
Every year, drowning causes 2,000 child deaths in Vietnam. Hue Help is an organization dedicated to reducing this figure.
In Vietnam, Thanh Hoa is one of the areas that has the highest number of drowning cases. Thanh Hoa is also where Vietnam Jungle Marathon takes place.
With the aim of preventing child drowning, the Topas Vietnam Trail Series has co-operated with Hue Help organization to introduce the Swimming for Safety campaign in Thanh Hoa province.
The latest in a series of activities took place between 15th June to 21st July 2022, spreading knowledge of water safety to 200 students in Thanh Hoa.
Two hundred students were carefully instructed by trained coaches. In these lessons, children were taught about survival swimming, water safety awareness and land-based rescue skills.
These lessons were carefully planned and each student was evaluated.
To measure the effectiveness of the lessons, the 18-lesson program also included evaluation tests.
The effectiveness of the program can be seen clearly in the performance of the students. The kids’ knowledge and skills have improved significantly.
In the first test, no students could swim on the front for 5m, nor could any students swim on the back for 5m.
Just 5% of the students could float on their back for 10 seconds and then safely regain the standing position.
The first assessment results also revealed weaker performances in female than male students.
At the midterm test, after 10 lessons, most of the children achieved all the tasks except swimming on front for 15m and back for 15m.
Following the full training course, the performance of pupils improved significantly. While at the beginning of the course 0% of students could swim even 5m, by the end almost 100% of them could swim on their back for 25m and almost all could also swim on their front for 25m.
Importantly almost all could also complete a throwing rescue and a talking rescue technique.
As a whole, the kids have been given a very well rounded set of swim skills, from knowledge to practical ability.
The evaluation of the project revealed that it has been rated by the schools, parents, and the authorities as important and highly valuable.
As a result of this program, 200 children have been taught the essential life skill of survival swimming.