STUDENTS of the Doone Kennedy Hobart Aquatic Centre’s Swim and Water Survival School will now have the opportunity to ring a bell to mark their graduation through the levels of their learn-to-swim journey.
Hobart Lord Mayor Sue Hickey recently unveiled the brass naval ship bell, which was donated by the Federation of Totally and Permanently Incapacitated Ex Servicemen and Women (TPI).
“Students who graduate will have the opportunity to ring the bell, creating an incentive for those aspiring to move through the program,” she said.
TPI vice president Richard Blake said TPI was dedicated to building better lives for Australia’s disabled veterans and their families.
“Its mission has been to respond in creative and flexible ways to the changing and sometimes unpredictable problems and difficulties faced by disabled veterans,” he said.
“The Tasmanian branch members are regular users of the Doone Kennedy Hobart Aquatic Centre and are proud that the 50-metre pool is named the Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Pool, dedicated to those Australians who served in the Vietnam War between 1962 and 1975.”
Ald Hickey said the bell was a fitting tribute to the centre’s Swim and Water Survival School as it enhanced the links with those who had served in the Australian Defence Forces.
The Swim and Water Survival School at the Doone Kennedy Hobart Aquatic Centre sees more than 1,300 children participating in its classes each year.
The program is designed to suit individual ability, skill and confidence levels, with classes starting from water familiarisation for infants and school-age children through to stroke correction for adult swimmers.
“Our Swim and Water Survival School continues to improve accessibility to those within the community with disabilities, access restrictions and learning impairments, much like the TPI does for its ex servicemen and women,” Ald Hickey said.
“The school will be training teachers in the Auslan signing course to ensure even those with hearing impairments are not limited to learning such an important life skill such as swimming.”
Caption: Hobart Lord Mayor Sue Hickey and vice president of the Federation of Totally and Incapacitated Ex Servicemen and Women, Richard Blake, pictured with the brass naval ship bell. Photo credit: Alastair Bett.