Swim Ireland is the National Governing Body (NGB) for Swimming, Water Polo, Diving and Synchronised Swimming across the 32 counties of Ireland, recognised as such by the Department of Sport through Sport Ireland and Sport Northern Ireland. Swim Ireland is also recognised at World level by FINA, and at European level by LEN.
With a membership of over 19,000 we have a network of 163 Clubs across every county in Ireland. Our remit as a Governing Body is to increase participation, run the competitive aspect of our sport and to provide a framework for regulation. Working in partnership with Local Sports Partnerships we are the delivery agents for the aquatic actions and strategic objectives set by the Irish Government in the National Physical Activity Plan and National Sports Policy, one of which is identified as to ‘Get Ireland Swimming’.
Mass Participation is a key pillar of our Strategic Plan 2017-2021 and one of our key strategic goals is simply to ‘Get Ireland Swimming’.
We are the leading providers of accredited education to the leisure industry in Ireland. We work very closely with LSPs and other community partners to deliver programmes and can provide expert advice and guidance to facilities on how to maximise the use of pool time through efficient programming.
As a leading NGB we are well placed to contribute to this draft development plan.
Swimming is an integral part of Irish society, its impact reaching beyond the sport itself. The Healthy Ireland (HI) Obesity Policy and Action Plan takes a life-course, evidence-based approach to tackling obesity and overweight and there is a strong body of research supporting the importance of swimming as a life-long activity.
We note that there is little reference to swimming or the provision of swimming pools in the Draft Plan and would suggest that consideration be made to its inclusion for reasons that we will set out within this submission. We advocate to continue our partnership with the local authority, pools, swimming, and water polo clubs in Carlow County.