WaterWise article translated from Sea Rescue magazine Summer 2016
The reception WaterWise received at the schools was unforgettable. It was a first for Mauritius. The learners were like sponges wanting to absorb information – you could see how their eyes widened; and even the questions and positive feedback from their teachers were touching and amazing. Everyone was truly grateful for this new programme. It is clear that drowning and near drowning are common occurrences on the island. In most cases it’s due to a lack of knowledge about how to respond in an emergency. ‘Kids run away and don’t want to get involved,’ was the immediate answer from one teacher. Some of the youngsters also mentioned that there are indeed life jackets on every boat, but no one uses them! What’s more, they often tend to swim without adult supervision and do not realise the dangers of the ocean.