In September 2018, ASSA Water Safety Committee Convenor, Siria Thomas, proposed to the Committee that a new way to compliment other drowning prevention campaigns focused on under 5 year olds was needed.  One that would embody the cartoon-like fantasy super heroes embraced by so many in that age bracket. One where the key characters had applicable super powers.

The powers would align with ASSA’s SAFERswimming Layers of Protection message; built on:

  • Constant adult supervision,
  • Proper barriers (mainly being fences and gates at this stage),
  • Swimming and water safety skills, and
  • Emergency Action Plan.

Siria proposed the child-like characters be (ordered to fit the above):

  • Skye,
  • Force,
  • Glide, and
  • Dash

The concept was readily adopted by the Committee and a professional children’s illustrator, Jason Howe, was engaged. Jason’s first expert draft stimulated more discussion, deepening the thought behind the concept and triggering further options for marketing.

In order to stay true to the vital messages, a/the ‘responsible adult’ was needed – to educate, lead and guide the SAFERwater WARRIORS. Hence, Yindy came into being: the SAFERwater WARRIORS ‘leader’; their guru – sensai – mentor – professor/teacher – wise one – master – ‘mother’. They are responsible, expert, wise, experienced, respected and loved. Yindy is akin to Professor Dumbledore and Yoda.

The name has been derived from ‘Yindyamarra’, an Australian First Nation’s word that is often translated as respect. However, it has multiple meanings including, to give honour, to slow, and take responsibility.

The SAFERwater WARRIORS was launched on the 30th July 2019, during the Australian Swim Schools Conference in Cairns. Pictured above is the ASSA Water Safety Committee, with Jason Howe, at the Launch.

A new approach is needed to compliment ASSA’s and other drowning prevention campaigns, focused on under 5 year olds.

Something that would embody the cartoon-like fantasy super heroes embraced by so many in that age bracket.

One where each character had a super powers that connected with each level.

Our committee embraced and developed the idea, we enlisted the help of professional children’s illustrator and the SAFERwater WARRIORS were born …

Skye’s superpower is her vision, the ability to spot situations where SUPERVISION is needed.

Because Skye is a child, she’s not the one to supervise herself, but to raise awareness, remind those Adults who should be supervising, to caution other children who should

be supervised, and acknowledge those supervising correctly.

On her belt Skye has a badge, with her symbolic all seeing eye, always maintaining a vigilant watch.

Force’s special ability is the power of protection.

He’s really good at making sure fences and barriers are in place to reduce the risk, and to also make sure they are working, and being used.

If that pool gate gets left open, Force will spot it and remind everyone it needs to be shut and also be the first to cheer you on when barriers are used correctly.

On Force’s badge is the venerable pool fence.

Glide is really good at her swimming and water safety skills, but also knows how important those skills are and is the greatest champion at making sure those skills are learned early and practiced consistently through the year.

Glide will be the one to make sure kids keep up their lessons and learn the correct behaviours in and around the water.

Glide’s badge features a swimmer in the water to let everyone know that aspect of water safety can’t be forgotten.

Dash is all about Emergency Planning, and if something were to happen, he’s super quick to act – He knows what to do because he’s planned well.

If someone goes missing, Dash will be first to remind everyone to check the pool first, and to alert an adult if anyone is in trouble.

If help is needed he knows all about CPR.

Dash’s badge is reminder that help needs to be close by and easy to contact, and that time is of the essence.

Our warriors are young, energetic, and use their superpowers well …

Who brings them all together is Yindy.

Yindy’s name is derived from Yindyamarra”.

This is an Australian First Nation’s word that is often translated as “respect” … It can also mean to give honour, to slow things and to take responsibility, and this is what she does for our SAFERwater WARRIORS.

Yindy guides them, she watches over them and she takes responsibility, as all adults should.

Yindy carries all of the WARRIOR’s badges as she is connected to them all.


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