Deaf Children Australia (DCA) launched Puggles Swim to swimming schools across Australia from September 2022, to support and include deaf and hard-of-hearing children in learning to swim in.
Why did DCA launch Puggles Swim? A national survey demonstrated parents of deaf and hard of hearing children worry about their child being included in mainstream activities, with swimming being a key one. We believe all children should have the opportunity to learn this essential life skill and enjoy its many benefits.
This is why DCA created Puggles Swim. It is a unique online course for accredited swimming teachers, upskilling them, so they can teach both deaf, hard of hearing and hearing kids in a mainstream learn-to-swim class, helping to build inclusive communities.
To date, 1250 swimming teachers have enrolled in the course, with approximately 820 successfully completing it to become a Puggles Skipper; they are delivering their new skills with great effect across Australia. Puggles Skippers are reporting on the positive impact their new skills are having on not only deaf and hard of hearing children, but all children.
The Puggles Swim course is interactive, and includes videos of pool demonstrations, key Auslan signs, downloadable resources and more, arming teachers with deaf aware tactics and 3 PD points.