Latest News

Back to Latest News back


CALD Academy refugee swimming and employment program secures Zest award

CALD Academy refugee swimming and employment program secures Zest award
July 23, 2021

The recently held Zest Awards saw the CALD Academy: Refugee Learn to Swim and Employment Program secure the Exceptional Community Partnership Award. The CALD program is a collaboration between several community organisations, local businesses and training providers, including Accessible Diversity Services Initiative Limited (ADSi) and Belgravia Leisure.

The Zest Awards recognise the work of the community sector in Western Sydney and celebrate community initiatives in the region. The 2021 award winners were announced at Stadium Australia in June 2021.

The CALD Academy: Refugee Learn to Swim and Employment Program was launched in 2018 and is designed to connect refugee youth with aquatic recreation, vocational training, and employment. Participants undertake swimming lessons at Auburn Ruth Everuss Aquatic Centre in Lidcombe. Some participants also undertake vocational training to become swim teachers or lifeguards.

More than 200 young people have attended swimming lessons as part of the program. More than 20 of these have completed AUSTSWIM or lifeguard training. Pleasingly, several have also gained employment because of AUSTSWIM and lifeguard training.

The teams at Auburn Ruth Everuss Aquatic Centre and ADSi intend to continue the program, and there are plans for it to be extended to other Belgravia Leisure facilities in Western Sydney.

Auburn Ruth Everuss Aquatic Centre Manager Liz Stranix notes “partnering with a community organisation provides opportunity for services and resources to be more accessible and delivered more efficiently.”

She is pleased with the results of the program and adds “our program has benefited so many, including the young people who learn to swim and gain employment opportunities, whilst diversifying our centre’s workforce.”

Stranix encourages other recreation centres to consider implementing programs like the Refugee Learn to Swim and Employment Program if they have not already done so. If partnering with a community organisation, she recommends building a solid relationship, and advises “if you combine with passion and commitment from both sides, a successful program will be created.”

Belgravia Leisure and the Belgravia Foundation congratulate the CALD Academy team for their success, and for obtaining this recognition. This program shows the power of collaboration in local communities, and of the outcomes that can be achieved when organisations work together to provide opportunities for young people to gain new skills and employment.

Find out more about Belgravia Foundation here

Image: Zest Awards

Related Articles

12th April 2021 - AUSTSWIM continues to deliver training and support for swim and water safety teachers

9th March 2021 - Cardinia Shire Council’s Aboriginal and CALD Sports Assistance Program now open

27th February 2020 - Royal Life Saving helps new migrants with learn to swim and water safety program

5th December 2019 - AUSTSWIM receives funding boost to combat multicultural drownings

14th July 2021 - Belgravia Leisure trials inclusive ‘All In’ swimming program at Knox Leisureworks 

8th July 2021 - Belgravia Leisure introduces inclusive ‘All In’ swimming program at Franklin Pool and Leisure Centre

18th December 2020 - Belgravia Leisure’s achievements in aquatic programs and facilities recognised at AUSTSWIM Awards

12th October 2020 - Belgravia Leisure secures Whittlesea City Council aquatic facilities management contract

20th December 2019 - Report reveals Belgravia Leisure’s excellence in water safety and social value

12th November 2019 - Swimming Australia and Belgravia Leisure partner to deliver activity and experience-based swim school teaching

Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.


supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

Aussie Strength

We are Aussie Strength. The ultimate supplier for Commercial Gym Equipment that's built to deliver in the toughest environments. From USA-Built hardcore weight training equipment from Arsenal…

read more

Fitness / Technology / Wellness



Quayclean are a national cleaning and waste services partner with proven results in the understanding and delivery of cleaning needs and challenges faced by facilities including; major venues and…

read more

Aquatics / Hospitality / Surfaces / Venues



Intelligenz provides Leisure Management Software for managing all your Program Registrations, Facility Bookings, Membership Sales and POS Transactions; including detailed Reporting, automated…

read more

Access / Billing / Finance / Marketing / Technology


Smart Connection Consultancy

Smart Connection Consultancy is a boutique sport and recreation consultancy who has become one of Australia’s leading advocates for the use of synthetic sports surfaces as a vehicle to grow…

read more

Consultants / Recreation / Sport / Surfaces


Otium Planning Group

Otium Planning Group is a contemporary sport and leisure consultancy providing services in planning, facility development, management and funding for the sport, recreation and leisure industries…

read more

Aquatics / Consultants / Recreation / Sport / Venues


Aflex Inflatables

Aflex Inflatables are the leaders for obstacle courses, pool toys, waterparks and land-based watersides and fitness runs. They are industry leaders offering the widest range of pool, lake and beach…

read more

Aquatics / Play / Waterparks



Developed in Europe, this innovative system offers a safety management solution for swimming pools that checks individual swimmers via their wristband - monitoring their depth and time. Sensors…

read more

Aquatics / Hospitality / Safety / Technology / Waterparks


Polin Waterparks

Polin was founded in Istanbul in 1976, and has since grown into a leading company in the waterparks industry. Today Polin is one of the world leaders in the design, production, and installation of…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Waterparks


get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business