Team GB - Tokyo 2020 and Co-Founder Black Swimming Association
“I just want little black boys, little black girls, little Asian boys, little Asian girls, to just be able to look up at swimming and think it is something they can do and that they can achieve.”
Alice Dearing was 24 years old when she made her Olympic debut at the Tokyo 2020 Games. Originally from Birmingham, she learned to swim at 5 years old and joined competitive swimming at 8 years old; eventually progressing to elite level. In Tokyo she became the first black woman to represent Team GB in a swimming event at an Olympic Games.
Alice has a passion for making swimming accessible to all which led to her co-founding the Black Swimming Association (BSA) in 2020. Since then she has become a voice for black people in swimming, seeking to promote the life saving
benefits, as well as to increase diversity and inclusion in the sport.
Chair and Co-Founder, Black Swimming Association
“The BSA (Black Swimming Association) is set up as a bridge… building bridges into disenfranchised and disengaged communities.”
Danielle Obe is Co-founder and Chair of the Black Swimming Association (the BSA). Under her leadership, the BSA has gone from a simple concept to an internationally recognised organisation, positioned to tackle inherent systemic and institutional inequalities, break barriers to participation, and drive change for more ethnic diversity in aquatics.
Danielle's background is in Business Change & Integration Management, with a wealth of experience across the private, public and voluntary sectors. She is also an entrepreneur, mother of three avid swimmers, and inventor of Nemes, a
revolutionary tool designed to solve a significant barrier to
aquatics - the issue of water and chemical damage to hair and hairstyles, when swimming.
Ep 21. Alice Dearing & Danielle Obe, Co-founders & Chair, Black Swimming Association:
Representation and Creating Olympic History!
Alice Dearing made history at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, as the first black female swimmer to represent Team GB at an Olympic Games.
Danielle Obe is Chair of the Black Swimming Association, a charity that she co-founded along with Alice.
The Black Swimming Association (BSA) is a non-profit organisation set up to diversify the world of aquatics through education, advocacy, support and research.
In England currently 95% of black adults and 80% of black children don’t swim. Furthermore, black children are 3 times more likely to drown than white children (Source: Swim England)
The BSA is on a mission to change this. To break down barriers that Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities face in aquatics and to highlight the importance of learning to swim, as an essential
and invaluable life-saving skill.
Alice and Danielle, through the BSA, are determined to make aquatics safer and more accessible to their
communities, by inspiring and facilitating participation and inclusion for all.
Recorded Sept 2021.
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