The WSC is on a mission to harness the power of swimming to strengthen communities.


We know that when we get women swimming, we get everyone swimming.


We believe that learning to swim is a human right and understand the critical role that women have in driving the social, practical, and institutional changes needed to enable all communities to fully access and participate in the joy of swimming. Swimming is a gateway to new skills and opportunities, and a powerful intervention to help address some of the biggest challenges facing our communities. Swimming can have positive impacts on physical and mental health; community cohesion; adventures (such as surfing , kayaking, and family seaside holidays); environmental awareness; and employment.

Yet one in four adults in the UK cannot swim and 41% of children leave primary school unable to swim 25 metres. In the last decade, half a million women have refused to swim through fear of judgement, one in two mothers have stopped taking their children to learn to swim because of body image concerns and women are three times more likely than men to give up pool swimming. Nationally, sports centres report a shortage of swim teachers and lifeguards. And globally, every other minute, a child dies from drowning.



We work in two areas:

SWIM PROJECTS: Create and deliver swim projects designed around local needs; Building a supportive online community that provides advice and inspiration to get women swimming.

ENGAGEMENT: Design and deliver fun and interactive workshops on swimming; Advocacy on access and participation in swimming , drowning prevention, water and sustainability; Consultancy and insight on women’s swimming.


We are a catalyst for positive change. We do not replace existing organisations. Instead, we work collaboratively to utilise current infrastructure and identify best practice; creating new methods of working in order to reach those most in need.

We take a multi-stakeholder approach, working at the grassroots and linking through to regional, national and global levels. As a result we join the dots and strengthen partnerships between leisure centres, lidos, swimwear brands, government, multilateral organisations, schools, local community groups and individuals to shape policy, practice and swim culture.


The WSC logo is inspired by the Chinese proverb “Out of the Water A Lotus Rises”, used to describe strong, beautiful women in water, talented swimmers, and overcoming challenges and coming into bloom. The WSC grew out of the blog “A Lotus Rises”, which featured stories and advice from women across the outdoor swimming community.
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