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A man stands up in a moored wooden boat on Lake Victoria in Tanzania. There are lots of fishing boats in the background, and yellow and green rope piled on the golden sand in the foreground.

Saving lives on and around the world’s largest tropical lake

Photo: RNLI/3Brothers

The RNLI is always seeking new ways to save every one, and that means extending our lifesaving reach. Learn about the impact we’re making on drowning prevention in Tanzania, with the help of our international partner, EMEDO. 

Lake Victoria is immense. Over 30 million people live in its basin. And more than 100,000 fishers depend on it for their livelihoods. Understandably, such a large body of water carries danger, and many of those who live close to it can’t swim. So, in 2022, alongside EMEDO, the RNLI launched the Lake Victoria Drowning Prevention Project. 

Together, we collaborated with fishing communities to help locals share their stories about the impact of our drowning prevention work. In the video above, some of those affected explain how the understanding of drowning risks – and the approach to those risks – has changed. They point to, among other things, an increased use of lifejackets, a reduction in alcohol consumption and greater awareness of the dangers to children around the water. As Charles Amon, a primary school teacher in Busekera, explains in the video above, many of the children will be future fishers and parents, so educating the younger generation is key. 

Every other minute someone drowns around the world. But this leading killer isn’t getting the global attention it deserves. We want to make drowning prevention a priority worldwide and reduce this staggering loss of life.