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1,2,3, swim!

Because learning to swim represents not just a physical activity but the acquisition of an essential skill for us all, Paris 2024 is lending a hand, alongside the ANS (Agence nationale du sport), the FFN (Fédération Française de Natation), supported by EDF, the Seine Saint Denis department, and the city of Marseille.

Organised for the first time In 2021, in 2022 the initiative was spread in 24 towns, and more than 5 000 children were able to benefit from the programme. In 2023, 1,2,3, swim ! spread across the whole country, with 38 projets selected through a call for projects open to all collectivities and public interest associations. These projects allowed more than 20 000 children to learn how to swim.

Find more about the 38 projects

With 1.6 million inhabitants and only 36 pools, Seine-Saint-Denis is the country’s worst-equipped department for swimming. The Games provide the opportunity to develop the sporting infrastructure in Seine-Saint-Denis. Following the lead of the Olympic Aquatics Centre, the major aquatics facility that France has been demanding for over 10 years, five new swimming pools will be built or renovated in Seine-Saint-Denis by 2024, as well as six gyms and leisure centres. In the meantime, Paris 2024 and its stakeholders are rallying together to make swimming lessons more accessible for the inhabitants of the Seine-Saint-Denis department.

Summer 2021 : swimming lessons for 1 800 children

Throughout the summer of 2021, swimming and water safety lessons will be offered to almost two thousand 4- to 12-year-olds who do not yet know how to swim. The lessons will run until 29 August and are being held in four temporary pools set up for the occasion. Twenty swimming instructors will be on-hand throughout the summer to lead the courses, which are each made up of ten 45-minute sessions spread over two weeks. The children will take the lessons in groups of ten, in strict compliance with the applicable healthcare regulations. A certain number of swimming lessons for adults are also being offered by the towns where the swimming pools are located.

Gilles Sezionale, Président of the French Swimming Federation

The teaching of swimming is imperative for our individual and collective safety, and ensuring that people know how to swim is a genuine concern for society. In this context, I have been determined to make learning to swim a priority for our federation. The prospect of the Olympic and Paralympic Games Paris 2024 must serve as a veritable catalyst to profoundly transform our society and move us on from being a nation of sportspeople to being a sporting nation.