Local starts swim school

2015-09-15 06:00
Visitors to the Manenberg swimming pool can soon look forward to swimming lessons offered by Primrose Park resident Nazlie Manchest.

Chevon Booysen

Visitors to the Manenberg swimming pool can soon look forward to swimming lessons offered by Primrose Park resident Nazlie Manchest. PHOTO: Chevon Booysen

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A swimming school headed by a resident of Primrose Park will open at the Manenberg public pool soon.

After being egged on by a woman in her community, Nazlie Manchest says she has finally given into the idea of hosting a swimming school at the public pool in her community.

Manchest, who has come a long way from teaching swimming lessons at home and being a lifesaver at the Wynberg pools to teaching at the Ryk Neethling Academy in Johannesburg, says she now wants to give back to her community.

“A woman who knows me well always asked me to teach her how to swim. So she saw me one day after I relocated back to Cape Town from Johannesburg and she asked me again to start something where she could learn to swim,” Manchest says.

She says this was her motivation to do something for her community.

Despite already having her plate full as a mother and part-time instructor at a gym, Manchest decided to set the ball in motion by approaching various swimming equipment companies to help her in the venture.

“I called Speedo and they have donated swimming aids, which includes swimming goggles. Oggi Swimwear also came on board and donated swimming caps as well as costumes,” she says.

Manchest says she intends to offer lessons to children as young as three right through to adult classes.

“You find that people cannot swim and they are grown already and this will be a space for them to be taught in a safe space and learn to be safe in the water. As for children, you often hear of children drowning and this is due to them not being equipped and taught how to be safe in the water,” she says.

Manchest says she wants swimming to become a sporting code at schools in the community.

“Athletics is a sport pupils take part in at school but it is seldom that you hear children die while practising or participating in athletics. We need to get our children to be wise in pools and at these swimming lessons they will be taught how to play safe sports in the pool instead of jumping on each other and playing dangerous games in the water,” Manchest explains.

Safety and security were also aspects that were taken into consideration, Manchest says, adding that public pools are often prone to break-ins and unsavoury characters often loiter outside the Hanover Park and Manenberg pools.

“At the end of the day the community doesn’t enjoy the facilities offered to them. Children are scared to go to the pools because of this and because of this I will be approaching the local police as well as the City to ensure safety is a priority, especially when lessons are taking place. I will not back down that easily,” she says.

Manchest has invited parents and children to register with her H2O Academy for Development Swimming at the Manenberg swimming pool today at 16:00.

Parents should bring along their children’s birth certificates, a photograph of the child as well as a R20 registration fee.

Classes will take place with two instructors from Mondays to Wednesdays from 17:30.

For more information contact Manchest on 078 862 6350 or 021 638 2053

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