- New KidSwim category added to existing KidSport program
- Eligible WA families will be able to use KidSport vouchers to access swimming lessons from January 1, 2021
- McGowan Government initiative to assist low-income families enrolling in swimming lessons by contributing up to $150 towards their fees
Western Australian families will now have the opportunity to use their KidSport vouchers towards swimming lessons as a part of the McGowan Government's hugely popular KidSport program.
From January 1, 2021, current KidSport vouchers will be able to be used at approved swim schools, including those endorsed by recognised State Sporting Associations such as Royal Life Saving WA.
Sport and Recreation Minister Mick Murray today announced the KidSwim initiative at Terry Tyzack Aquatic Centre, with Mt Lawley MLA Simon Millman.
The KidSport program provides eligible children with grants of up to $150 per year to help pay club fees, easing the burden on many families who have struggled in 2020 due to the impacts of COVID-19.
KidSport is administered by the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries, and applications are open all year round. Details on how to apply for KidSport can be found at http://www.dlgsc.wa.gov.au/kidsport
The new swim school club category will be available for eligible families to utilise in 2021.
With the end of 2020 drawing near, eligible families are also encouraged to make sure they make the most of the annual KidSport vouchers and join a sporting club if they have not done so already.
Comments attributed to Sport and Recreation Minister Mick Murray:
"Since its inception in 2011, KidSport has been hugely popular and has provided more than $31 million through 192,000 vouchers to help kids from low-income families across WA play sport - and it's fantastic to be able to build on this success with the new KidSwim initiative.
"Western Australia's remarkable coastline and landscape means our lifestyles tend to involve a lot of water activities, so it's vital that all children are given the opportunity to learn water safety skills and how to swim.
"The impact of COVID-19 on the community has meant that many kids and families may have missed out on in-school swimming lessons this year - and KidSwim will ensure they are able to rebuild swimming skills as quickly as possible.
"Royal Life Saving WA has been advocating for these changes as part of their efforts to prevent drowning in our communities - and I am pleased the McGowan Government has been able to deliver this life-saving initiative."
Comments attributed to Royal Life Saving WA CEO Peter Leaversuch:
"This announcement by the McGowan Government represents a vitally important step forward in ensuring no child in WA misses out learning to swim.
"Royal Life Saving has been concerned that more and more families were finding it difficult to afford lessons and Minister Mick Murray is to be congratulated for acting to close this gap. It will save lives and develop lifelong skills.
"Teaching children to swim and survive is the single most important investment families can make to reduce drowning - and with the start of summer, Royal Life Saving is encouraging all children to enrol in a swimming and water safety program."
Comments attributed to Mount Lawley MLA Simon Millman:
"With two boys at our local public school, I know how valuable in-school swimming is as part of the school's activities.
"The disruption to the school year has meant they've missed out on swimming.
"The inclusion of swim school clubs in the KidSport program will help kids prepare themselves to take full advantage of summer fun.
"I encourage all parents to use the KidSport vouchers, and enjoy the fantastic sport and recreation facilities our neighbourhood has to offer."
Minister's office - 6552 6400