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During this celebration of womens day, I want to thank all the women for all the joy you bring to us, balancing family and work without ever complaining or skipping a step. Thank you to the men who support all the women in our families and our organisation – it is only through great teamwork that we can achieve our goals and successes. 

We are pleased to inform you that we had a relatively “smooth” return to training and swim teaching over the last six weeks. I say smooth, with my tongue firmly in my cheeks, as the office staff would disagree with me. From their point of view, it has been highly demanding and stressful. Staff have worked many long hours, late into the evening and on weekends to get us to where we are today. 

Registrations

Thus far we have registered the following number of members:

 

Membership Type

No of members in KZN

Competitive Swimmers

891

Recreational Swimmers

74

Learn to Swim participants

199

Swimming Instructors

105

Swimming Coaches

47

Note you can now Register Online at the following link

https://forms.gle/KoFHNmqr17fRkJ4F8

Have a copy of your ID and proof of payment saved on your phone or laptop before starting the on-line registration process.

Good News –  Swimming South Africa have approved a new membership type classified as Recreational Swimmers, which caters for non-competitive swimmers, such as parents wanting to keep fit or other athletes such as lifesavers and triathlon competitors who need to train but do not participate in swimming galas. The membership fee is R200.

We have experienced challenges with the additional administration required to comply with the Covid regulations and it has needed intervention by the executive to guide the team. My appreciation goes out to all the office staff and records administrators in the districts for their willingness to go the extra mile. Thank you to Phila, Lloyd, Trichelle, Calmin, Zandi, Kathy, Pat, Cecil, Deidre, and Lynn. Thanks to our executive members who took on the challenge, particularly Hennie and Rodney, for your dedication and patience. We also had assistance from Angela and her team at Aquazone; they have been trained to register swimmers on Team Manager.

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Now that training has settled down into a routine, the next question on everyone’s lips is “When can we start competing”? When is the first Gala?

Galas

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We are fortunate that Swimming South Africa’s Covid-19 Approval includes competitions, and we are planning some trial galas to evaluate a proposed protocol for competing. Our initial advice from Professor Naidoo is to limit the number of clubs at galas to minimize the risks of Covid transmissions. Alternative competitions protocols are being looked at, and the factors that affect risk are the following:

  1. Number of competitors
  2. Number of officials – keeping in mind that many officials are in the high risk category due to their age
  3. Number of coaches
  4. Social distancing

 

Fortunately, these risk factors are within our control, and we will be preparing gala hosting protocols that will mitigate against these risks and thus minimise any opportunity of covid transmission. I would like to remind all clubs that we must still follow the provincial protocols for communication, competition, and gala approval. Clubs and coaches should not be writing directly to Swimming South Africa. Clubs who would like to host 

or propose a competition must prepare standard operating procedures for the gala and submit it to their district and provincial compliance officer. Thereafter Swimboard and KZNA Executive will review and approve respectively before submitting it to Swimming South Africa.

We still have no pools available in the Black Townships, and we will meet with the municipality to fast track access to at least one pool before the end of August. Kings Park Swimming Pool is being recommissioned, and pumps and filters are fully functional. The heat pumps will be starting up later this month, and we are targeting the opening of the pool by September.

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Lastly, I would like to express my appreciation for all the work that the Swimming South Africa compliance office has undertaken.    The SSA compliance office, under the leadership of Anton Jordaan, issued a total of 28 377 permits. 417 venues have been authorised to resume activities.    760 venues have been processed, however many of the pools cannot open yet as they operate from gyms or school pools who are still under lockdown. They have taken on a massive project at short notice and implemented a system that is working for all of us. The application process can get frustrating at times; however, I want to urge everyone to please treat them with the respect that they deserve.

 

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Yours in swimming

Peter Thompson

President