On Friday, a group of primary school pupils were in for a real treat. Not only did they get their first free swimming lesson at the National Swimming Centre the Tongelreep, they also, amongst other things, got to meet Dutch Olympic swimmer, Maud van der Meer.
The children, who are part of ‘Heel Eindhoven Zwemt’ (All of Eindhoven Swims), programme were given a behind-the scenes tour of the Swimming Centre and an hour-long first swimming lesson, where they met Ms Van der Meer. She even gave them a few tips. The highlight of the afternoon was the opportunity to watch the evening session of the FINA/Airweave Swimming World Cup. This was held in the spectacular Pieter van Hoogenband Swimming Stadium.
The ‘Heel Eindhoven Zwemt’ programme is presented by BrabantSport, in conjunction with More2Win and the Eindhoven City Council. Over the next year, the 36 children will get weekly free swimming lessons in order to obtain their swimming diploma. This special first lesson was arranged because the North Brabant Province wants to create social spin-offs at major sporting events.
Tournament director, Pieter van den Hoogenband, supports the ‘Heel Eindhoven Zwemt’ initiative. “We want to host a spectacular swimming event, with more experience in and around the pool. I think it’s nice to see that these children are being encouraged to learn to swim. Every child needs to know basic swimming safety. It is fantastic that BrabantSport is making this possible. These may be our champions of the future! ” he said.
Photo and video: BrabantSport