World Conference on Drowning Prevention wraps up in Durban

LSV representatives were among the 500 delegates from 64 countries who attended the World Conference on Drowning Prevention in Durban, South Africa from 7-10 October.

In total, LSV delivered nine presentions covering a range of work including VR technology, the Everyday Lifesaver App, the success of the Play It Safe By The Water (PISBTW) campaign, the SwimSafe pool safety campaign, multicultural water safety pathways programs, and coastal drowning blackspot research.

The conference is a biennial event that brings together the world’s foremost experts in research, swimming and water safety education, systems and information on drowning prevention, rescue, lifesaving and water safety.

It was attended by representatives from international water safety organisations, government and councils, education and tertiary institutions, and advocates.

“The key areas of discussion at this year’s conference focussed on effective interventions and strategies for supporting sustainable prevention efforts, advancements in rescue and resuscitation, and the role of drowning prevention in the development agenda,” said LSV Research Manager Rhiannon Birch.

“It was also an opportunity to report on the progress made on the 10 actions to prevent drowning, as outlined in the World Health Organisation’s 2014 Global Report on Drowning.”

LSV was also able to showcase the breadth and quality of the work it’s doing, share ideas, and learn from and collaborate with people in other countries and industries who are working in a similar space.

“We had a lot of interest in our programs, particularly the VR and App technology and long-term programs like PISBTW and multicultural pathways programs,” said Ms Birch.

“We were able to see the fantastic progress made by our partner organisations Sri Lanka Life Saving and Royal Life Saving Bahrain, which have made incredible strides in recent years and have been able to guide other fledgling lifesaving organisations to develop their programs.

“The conference also gave us a fantastic opportunity to share our research into survival swimming programs and address the challenges of developing programs in different settings, as well as attend workshops on how to translate our research into practice,” said Ms Birch.

The next World Conference on Drowning Prevention will be hosted in Sri Lanka in 2021.

For further details about the conference, visit: https://www.wcdp2019.co.za/

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