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World Drowning Prevention Day
Drowning has caused over 2.5 million deaths in the last decade. The overwhelming majority of these deaths (90%) happen in low- and middle-income countries. Globally, the highest drowning rates occur among children aged 1–4 years, followed by children aged 5–9 years.
The human, social and economic toll of these losses is intolerably high, and entirely preventable.
The implementation of evidence-based, low-cost drowning prevention interventions can drastically reduce risk of drowning. These include:
- installing barriers controlling access to water
- providing safe places away from water such as crèches for pre-school children with capable childcare
- teaching swimming, water safety and safe rescue skills
- training bystanders in safe rescue and resuscitation
- setting and enforcing safe boating, shipping and ferry regulations
- improving flood risk management
World Drowning Prevention Day, declared in April 2021 by United Nations General Assembly resolution A/RES/75/273, is held annually on 25 July. Through this global event, we remember lives lost due to drowning and aim to increase knowledge on safety in and around water.
The World Health Organization (WHO) is beginning preparations for the third World Drowning Prevention Day (WDPD), to take place on 25 July 2023.
Following very positive feedback on the WDPD 2022 theme ‘Do one thing – to end drowning’, WHO is issuing the following expanded Call to Action:
As in 2022, WHO hopes this approach will inspire all partners – individuals, groups and governments – to take action, no matter how far along they are with their work on drowning prevention.
The WHO WDPD 2023 Campaign Page is now live and accessible using the following URL: https://www.who.int/campaigns/world-drowning-prevention-day/2023. Please note that this page will be routinely updated as additional WHO resources are finalized and uploaded, so please ensure to check the webpage at regular intervals for new feature stories, social media materials and WDPD 2023 event details.
As in 2022, WHO will be hosting a WDPD 2023 General Information Webinar on 22 May 2023, 13:00-14:00 Central Europe Summer Time. Please save the date – an invitation and registration link will be shared at the beginning of May. This webinar will provide an opportunity for partners to share their plans for observing WDPD 2023 with the aim to inspire events and activities around the world. WHO will also provide updates on key resources being developed.
To help WHO better understand partner plans for WDPD 2023, we invite you to complete a short online survey prior to 10 May, available through the following link: https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=t8AQ9iS9OUuBCz3CgK-1kNxg_IHcq9lCgji289XQJ1FUOTEwNEFXS0RRWTJFUlUyUzNaWkFJRlpQUS4u
This survey should not take more than 10 minutes to complete but will be very helpful for us.
Thank you once more for all that you are collectively doing to support drowning prevention around the world and we look forward to commemorating this important event together.
- WHO World Drowning Prevention Day 2023 Campaign page: https://www.who.int/campaigns/world-drowning-prevention-day/2023#:~:text=World%20Drowning%20Prevention%20Day%2C%20declared,safety%20in%20and%20around%20water.
- WHO News Release on World Drowning Prevention Day 2022: https://www.who.int/news/item/25-07-2022-who-calls-on-global-community-to–do-one-thing–to-save-lives-on-world-drowning-prevention-day
- Global report on drowning: preventing a leading killer: https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/global-report-on-drowning-preventing-a-leading-killer
- Preventing drowning: an implementation guide: https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/9789241511933
- UN General Assembly resolution “Global drowning prevention” 75/273 (2021): https://daccess-ods.un.org/access.nsf/Get?OpenAgent&DS=A/75/L.76&Lang=E