JBFC Swim Club

September 24, 2014 9:23 pm Published by

Growing up, I was in the pool every day of summer break from the time I started having a summer break. My family always valued the importance of knowing how to swim and water safety has always been a huge part of my life.

Here at JBFC, we live right on Lake Victoria. Literally, steps away from the shore. Living that close to water, I felt like it was so important that all of our girls at JBFC know how to swim. Several months back, good friends of JBFC’s in Mwanza gave us a small, blow up swimming pool. While the pool didn’t last long because of the heat and direct sunlight, it was the birth of our brain child…the JBFC Swimming Pool. We were able to reuse the pump from that pool and Chris and I donated the funds to build it into the side of the hill behind our houses.

 The idea was that once it was built, I would have a place to teach the girls how to swim. The pool was finished on the Fourth of July and the first group of girls to get to swim were award winners: they were all in the top three students in their classes at Joseph and Mary. We quickly realized that day, that the girls would all need swimsuits.


 Since I was heading back to America that month, I sent a quick email out to all of my friends and family to see if any of them had old swimming suits they would be willing to donate. The response was astounding as suits, goggles and water toys began rolling in from all over the country. Practically everyone I saw on my visit to the States gave me suits to bring back.

 I returned to JBFC in August and handed the suits out to the girls who were so excited to receive them! Currently, we are in the middle of a two-week break from school before we start the last term. So I thought, what better time for the girls to break in the swimming pool and their new swimsuits?

 Each afternoon during break, a different set of four girls has a lesson with me in the pool. We start with bobbing and floating and end with jumping in from the side of the pool and swimming back to the wall. The girls are absolutely fearless! Even our youngest and newest girls Esther and Lucy jumped right in and loved it.



I have been doing a short lesson with the girls just to see what level they are at, and then we just play around and enjoy the pool and water toys afterwards. They especially love finding rings, torpedoes and sharks on the bottom of the pool.

We will continue lessons on the weekends once school resumes. It has brought so much happiness to me just to see the joy in their faces as they splash around and play in the water. And we have a few fishes on our hands, which make me even happier.

 Blogger Melinda Wulf is JBFC’s resident Swim Coach & Administrative Director.

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This post was written by Mainsprings