Water sports and recreation are an important part of the Western Australian lifestyle. However, each year too many Western Australians drown or are hospitalised following a near-drowning incident at beaches, rivers or home swimming pools, making water safety a very important safety issue for the community.
Since 2003, BHP Billiton Iron Ore and the Royal Life Saving Society Western Australia (RLSSWA) have worked in partnership to promote water safety, health and wellbeing across Western Australia.
Through this 10-year partnership, BHP Billiton has supported targeted community programs such as Swim and Survive, Keep Watch, Watch Around Water, Remote Aboriginal Swimming Pools, Infant Aquatics and Indigenous Traineeships.
These initiatives are improving water safety through education, training, advocacy and awareness campaigns.
The partnership also includes an annual Have-A-Go-Day for our employees’ children and grandchildren. It is based on the RLSSWA’s Swim and Survive program, which is designed to provide essential swimming, water safety and survival skills for children.
Over the past ten years, more than one million children have participated in the Swim and Survive program. Together with RLSSWA, we have established the Remote Aboriginal Swimming Pools program across six remote Indigenous communities located in Western Australia.
The Swim and Survive Equity program has increased accessibility to swimming lessons for children from disadvantaged backgrounds living in Perth. The Keep Watch program has contributed to the reduction of toddler drownings in Western Australia and is the longest running prevention initiative under the RLSSWA.
Based upon the success and engagement of families and children across the state of Western Australia, in 2012, BHP Billiton Iron Ore renewed its partnership with RLSSWA for three years with a commitment of approximately US$1.5 million.
Read more on our community investment activities in the BHP Billiton Community Review (PDF 3.6 MB)
2003 to 2015
US$2.5 million (2000 to 2015)