Making a splash
A pioneering Islington sports project has helped train 15 women to become qualified lifeguards.
This Girl Can Islington was set up to increase physical activity amongst women and girls aged 14 and over. The project offers a range of sports and physical activity sessions in addition to training and qualifications.
Islington is the first borough to have trained female lifeguards through This Girl Can. The lifeguarding qualification takes women through a week-long training course, which includes learning First Aid, how to use early intervention and how to save a person in distress.
Dajana Kastrati joined the This Girl Can Islington lifeguarding course at age 16. After passing the course, Dajana had an interview to join the BETTER lifeguard team in Islington and was recruited to Cally Pool and Highbury as a Lifeguard.
Dajana said: “The course was very interesting and I really enjoyed it. It was women-only, so I felt that I was more comfortable especially during the poolside training, and I gained confidence and met new friends.
“I hope in the future there are more females being trained as lifeguards as it is a brilliant qualification to have.”
Sport England has awarded £236,000 National Lottery funding to This Girl Can Islington, which has funded a range of activities. Alongside the lifeguard training, This Girl Can Islington offers sessions including women-only exercise classes, swimming, gym, tennis and basketball.
All sessions are £2 and residents are invited to turn up and have fun. Beginner level activities are available in female friendly environments. More information here.