Thousands of youngsters have been warned about the dangers of playing near water.
Members of Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade (TVLB) visited schools in the region to promote water safety messages and reduce incidents of drowning as part of ‘Drowning Prevention Week.
More than 2,200 children took part in fun and interactive sessions highlighting how to stay safe in and around water while TVLB members gave safety talks, told what to do in an emergency and demonstrated the equipment they carried.
Schools visited included Amberley Primary, Beech Hill Primary, Greenfields Community Primary, Hadrian Park Primary, Wallsend Jubilee Primary, Wellfield Middle and Waterville Primary.
The Brigade also joined forces with North Sea Volunteer Lifeguards (NSVL) to carry out a ‘Perry Walk’, walking the five miles from St Mary’s Island to the TVLB Brigade Watch House where a barbecue, cake sale and raffle raised just under £1,000.
TVLB Captain Peter Lilley said: “Although the Brigade carries out sea safety patrol throughout the year, the intensive week gives an opportunity for our members to educate large numbers of local children just before the summer holidays.”
Donna Robson, a former beach lifeguard who has been a member of the Brigade for six years, added: “It was great to visit so many schools, and help highlight the importance of knowing how to prevent drowning, whilst encouraging children to enjoy our coastline, but in a safe manner.”
“Reaching over 2,000 children during the week was our target for this year and we are all delighted to have achieved it.
“The children were very receptive to the message we were spreading and enjoyed looking at the multitude of rescue equipment we carry on our rescue vehicle.”
If anyone wishes to arrange a visit or talk please contact the TVLB’s education officer Ms Sam Levy via email firstname.lastname@example.org