LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Swimming program could carry Mia’s legacy

IN MIA'S MEMORY: Central Western Daily reader Virginia Faucett has an idea arising from last weekend's tragedy at Orange Aquatic Centre.
IN MIA'S MEMORY: Central Western Daily reader Virginia Faucett has an idea arising from last weekend's tragedy at Orange Aquatic Centre.

After the tragedy of little Mia Harrison drowning at the Orange Aquatic Centre on the weekend I wish to write this letter to warn all parents about water safety and how important it is to teach your kids to swim.

I’m a parent who brought my children up in remote farming country in the Northern NSW.

Our property was about 55 kilometres from the nearest town, and we lived near a creek and dam water access.

It was important to me to get them to learn to swim.

From the ages of about two to three years all my children were enrolled into a 10-day swimming class at our local council swimming pool.

After two days of kicking, screaming and tantrums I would withdraw them.

I did persist each year, and after the third year of trying, the children finally became confident and self-assured at swimming.

I wish to say to all parents to be very patient and keep persisting with their children to learn to swim.

There were 96 people who drowned in NSW last year (2016), according to Royal Life Saving Australia, and with spring and summer approaching I don’t want to see any more drownings in our rivers, lakes, beaches or backyard pools.

My prayers and thoughts are with the Harrison family, and especially Mekaela Harrison, Mia’s mum, at this time.

I would think a great idea would be to have a swimming program – mainly run at the Orange Aquatic Centre and by Orange City Council – named after Mia.

This would promote water safety and keep her memory alive.

Virginia Faucett