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Reducing beach drownings of members of multicultural communities in NSW

by  Africa Media Australia

The university of NSW’s Beach Safety Research Group is seeking multicultural community members to participate in a survey to help address a potentially higher risk of beach drowning and injury.

Beach drowning among people from multicultural communities continues to be a major concern in Australia, with people born overseas representing about a quarter of all drowning deaths, most of which occur at the beach.


An African-Australian boy learning to swim at a local pool


Studies are needed to better quantify how multicultural communities interact with the beach, what their swimming ability is like and what they understand about common beach safety practices and hazards. The findings of the study will help develop beach safety education that is targeted at these communities.

To address this gap, UNSW Beach Safety Research Group honours student Mark Woods is leading a study – Understanding the Beach Safety Knowledge of Multicultural Communities. The current study is focussing on Subcontinental Asian communities in Australia. A short online survey has been developed in partnership and consultation with multicultural community leaders and organisations such as the Multicultural Communities Council of Illawarra, Swim Sisters, Advance Diversity Services and Gymea Community Aid.

It is available to anyone in Australia who is 18 years of age or older and identifies as Indian, Nepalese, Bangladeshi, Sri Lankan, Pakistani, Afghani, Bhutanese or Maldivian.

If you are an organisation or individual who is interested in getting involved in the study, you can help by sharing the short and anonymous survey amongst your community networks.

The  Beach Safety Research Group on their website, or send an email at  info@beachsafetyresearch.com, or mark.woods@student.unsw.edu.au, 0435 068 614.NSW

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