Bush Nippers: Evaluating the effectiveness of the Nipper education program in regional inland Victoria, Australia

Calverley, Hannah L. M. and Birch, Rhiannon and Strugnell, Grace and Santiago, Allana C. and Baker, Shayne and Matthews, Bernadette L. (2021) Bush Nippers: Evaluating the effectiveness of the Nipper education program in regional inland Victoria, Australia. Health Promotion Journal of Australia. pp. 1-9. ISSN 1036-1073


Abstract

Issue addressed: Internationally, inland waterways are identified as leading locations for drowning. ‘Nippers’ programs provide coastal lifesaving and water safety knowledge and skills to children aged 5-14 years in Australia. However, a 49% increase in Victorian inland waterway drowning compared with the 10-year average, necessitated adapting the Nippers water safety program to inland regions: Bush Nippers. Methods: Overall, 105 participants from two age groups (under 9 and under 12) were involved across three Bush Nippers programs delivered at river and/or pool locations in regional Victoria, Australia. Surveys and observations assessed participants’ water safety knowledge and competencies, and used alongside interviews to obtain program feedback from parents, instructors and communities. Costs were compared to other aquatic programs to determine feasibility of replicating the program. Results: Significant increases in knowledge from pre to immediate posttest were recorded (P <.05) and water competencies were high posttest. Communities were grateful for the regional program delivery and understood the necessity of learning lifesaving skills, particularly in open water environments. Costs were akin to other similar programs indicating program replicability and enhancing likelihood of uptake. Conclusions: Bush Nippers increased water safety knowledge in children and was well received by the community. Wider uptake of the program is encouraged to diversify aquatic education for regional Victorian children. So what?: Given the high regard and demand for the program, and importance of learning lifesaving skills, provision of a scalable lifesaving program in inland regions may address the drowning trend and improve aquatic participation.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Education (1 Jul 2019 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Health and Wellbeing (1 Jan 2015 - 31 Dec 2021)
Date Deposited: 28 Feb 2022 06:16
Last Modified: 30 Mar 2022 04:11
Uncontrolled Keywords: nippers; water safety; lifesaving; children; open water; drowning prevention; inland waterways; program evaluation; regional communities
Fields of Research (2008): 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
13 Education > 1399 Other Education > 139999 Education not elsewhere classified
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111704 Community Child Health
Fields of Research (2020): 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4206 Public health > 420604 Injury prevention
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4206 Public health > 420601 Community child health
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4206 Public health > 420699 Public health not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 92 Health > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 20 HEALTH > 2004 Public health (excl. specific population health) > 200408 Injury prevention and control
20 HEALTH > 2004 Public health (excl. specific population health) > 200499 Public health (excl. specific population health) not elsewhere classified
20 HEALTH > 2099 Other health > 209999 Other health not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/hpja.566
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/46137

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