Local swimming school wins

Jubilant members of the BaySwim team, Jeanne Van Wyk, Matthew Strange and Matthew Rixson.

Tauranga’s BaySwim has won two national swim school awards.

The swim school – which is part of Bay Venues – was announced a two-timewinner at the annual Swim Coaches and Teachers of New Zealand conference over the weekend.

BaySwim won both the Outstanding Swim School of the Year and Swim School Promotion of the Year awards (in the 1001 to 2000 students’ category).

The Awards Committee applauded BaySwim for being a well-run swim school, with well-structured lessons, and a high regard for safety.

BaySwim manager Matthew Strange says it is “hugely satisfying” to have the vision of becoming one of NZ’s most comprehensive swim schools recognised on a national level.

“To date this has included aligning with the award-winning Northern Arena Swim School, and moving our programme from term-based to quarter-based periods to incorporate essential water safety skills.

“The promotion win also celebrates our endeavours to create opportunities for more people to participate in this essential life skill,” Matthew says.

This has been achieved through partnerships with the McLeod Group to provide 700 Aquababes with a free quarter of swimming lessons, and with the Salvation Army to garner sponsored lessons for pre-schoolers living within families experiencing financial hardship. BaySwimmers also receive unlimited free aquatic entry to community pools.

Matthew says BaySwim is achieving its aim to deliver a high-quality swimming development and water education programme to the Tauranga community, contributing to a community of vibrant, healthy and actively involved people. 

BaySwim’s wins have “delighted” local company the McLeod Group, which has provided major sponsorship over many years to the NZ Swim Coaches and Teachers Association.

 Anne McLeod is a life member of the organisation and said she was “extremely proud” to present BaySwim with the prestigious ‘Outstanding Swim School of the Year’ award, as well as the promotion accolade.

 “I have watched BaySwim closely over the last few years and am proud of the hard work and dedication put in by all of its staff to reach this high standard.”

Programming partners Northern Arena also won the ‘Best Overall Swim School of the Year’ – for the sixth consecutive year.

Matthew says entering the awards was a memorable experience, with the recent cyclone providing a challenge.

“We had issues associated with Cyclone Debbie closing in on us, and only managed to push send on our applications minutes before the deadline.”

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