KUCHING (May 24): Fifty students from primary schools in Kuching attended the Basic Sports Training Skills (KLAS) programme launching at Youth and Sports Department (JBS) Sarawak sports complex along Jalan Tun Ahmad Zaidi Adruce last Saturday.
The first lesson was hailed as a huge success by multiple SEA Games medallist Erika Kong, who conducted the programme.
“Special thanks to our federal Youth and Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh for launching this programme on May 13 and also the federal Youth and Sports Ministry (KBS) as well as Youth and Sports Department (JBS) Sarawak for giving MASWIM this opportunity to carry out this programme successfully.
“Not only does this programme help to raise the (children’s) awareness in the water, who knows it may discover a few new talents and Sarawak may be able to produce a few future Olympic swimmers,” Erika told The Borneo Post.
A member of Swimming Coaches of Malaysia Association, Erika also runs the RNJ Swimming Academy in Tabuan Desa.
More than 700 children nationwide are targeted to participate in the KLAS Renang programme, which was initiated by the Youth and Sports Ministry to expose children to basic swimming techniques.
The minister said the programme was also aimed at reducing cases of deaths due to drowning involving children.
It was launched with the support of Swimmers and Swimming Coaches of Malaysia Association and strategic partners Allianz Malaysia Bhd and Nestle Products Sdn Bhd.
The free-entry programme is specifically for children from B40 families aged six to 12 years.
“The objective of the programme is to expose participants to the correct swimming methods and techniques, increase participants’ water confidence, and cultivate healthy and active lifestyles through swimming activities,” said the ministry in a statement.
Kuching is one of the 18 districts from eight states where KLAS swimming will be held, including Setiawangsa, Cheras, Petaling, Gombak, Hulu Langat, Kota Kinabalu, and Sandakan.
The swimming programme will also be held in Kota Baru, Tanah Merah, Bachok, Kota Setar, Kubang Pasu, Johor Bahru, Muar, Segamat, Kuantan, and Bentong.