My Name is Toby Rocha from New South Wales (NSW), Australia. I am married to Belynda and we are the parents of two young boys. Prior to becoming an Infant Aquatic Survival Specialist, I was a police officer for 16 years. I loved my time on the police force and being able to help the community in their time of need.
When our first child was born, we completed a parent child swim class and knew immediately that it wasn’t teaching him to swim. We did not have a pool at the time but were considering getting one in our new house. Our boys needed to be able to survive in the water in case they fell in, so we enrolled them in swim survival lessons. Watching them develop their skills from sinking to eventually being able to swim float swim was amazing, and I was so proud of their accomplishments. After witnessing our kids’ lessons, Belynda and I knew that we wanted to bring survival swim lessons to Australia, where it takes children years to learn how to swim.
I was medically discharged from the NSW Police Force in 2016. Being discharged left a hole inside me which I wanted to fill. In 2017, while looking through real estate for a family home, we found a swim school for sale in Warners Bay, NSW, which we ended purchasing, with the plan of teaching effective, lifesaving swim lessons. We knew that there was no comparable program in the Newcastle area, so we began doing research and making enquiries about introducing this life saving course, in the Newcastle and Hunter Region.
We discovered Judy Heumann, founder of Infant Aquatics, and after a few conversations and emails, I flew to the U.S. and had the pleasure of being trained by the best. Judy’s passion and willingness to share her knowledge was amazing, and I feel fortunate to have benefitted from her years of experience. Judy helped me find what was missing to fill that hole that was inside me. Watching the kids learn how to swim and survive in the water, and the smiles and gratitude of their parents gave me a new purpose in life.
Living in a country surrounded by water like Australia, with the beach being the Australian way of life, Belynda and I want survival swim lessons to become the norm. With the help of Judy and Infant Aquatics, we are on our way to achieving our goals. I look forward to teaching your child to swim in weeks, not years, and to safely enjoy the water.