A program was designed in consultation with theschool and local authorities to improve overall water safety awareness with a particular focus on the dangers of jumping off high structures into nearby rivers and canals; this is a particular challenge in the area. An interactive approach was used with the children in small groups getting hands on with safety activities at discovery points; this built on the existing Irish Coast Guard safety programs allowing the audience to understand the consequences of their actions on or near the water.
During the exhibition 4th and 5th class children from both the Boys and Girls schools got to understand the use of ring buoys and the need to keep them safely stored for emergencies. They also got to discuss the dangers of abandoned waste like shopping trolleys that sit underneath the surface of rivers and canals that could cause serious injury if jumped into from a height. The Irish Coast Guard new Children’s Water safety pack along with wristbands weredistributed and the children will now take on an art competition depicting one of the safety messages from the day. There will be an award ceremony with prizes sponsored by the Irish Coast Guard and Canada Life Reinsurance in June for the winners.
This was a pilot partnership project led by the local Garda community policing team and the Coast Guard unit from Howth, it’s hoped the success of the project will lead to similar partnerships with corporations ensuring that children are able to make the most of the water during the summer but understand the dangers