Jimmy (6) and Jack (10) are brothers and despite both being on the Autism Spectrum, they could not be more different. Mum (Rebecca) was delighted when Rainbow Club opened in Toronto Swim Centre near Newcastle in July 2020 when all of Greater Sydney was in lockdown.

Jimmy (6) had never received formal swimming lessons prior to Rainbow Club and Rebecca was worried that Jimmy’s complex needs, separation anxiety and sensory challenges would prevent him from successfully engaging in his lessons. By the end of his first lesson and under the vigilant care of his teacher Talia, Jimmy was voluntarily submerging his entire self under water and having an absolute blast whilst doing it.

Jack (10) had been accessing seasonal swimming lessons and participating in the swimming programs run through his primary school. These provided him with basic water safety and swim skills, but it was becoming increasingly obvious that he required substantially more support in the pool than his peers and would benefit from a program that was more sensitive to his challenges. Kent is Jack’s Rainbow Club teacher and he delivers the lessons with the sensitivity required to alleviate Jack’s profound anxieties and gives him confidence in himself that extends beyond the pool.

Rebecca writes “Rainbow Club has afforded my children, with their own unique and diverse needs, the opportunity to participate in potentially life-saving lessons that they would otherwise not have access to. I am incredibly grateful to Rainbow Club and the staff who go above and beyond to make sure we are welcomed into the Rainbow Club community and receive a quality service each and every week”.

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