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We’re on a mission. We discovered that drowning is the 3rd cause of death worldwide amongst children between 4 and 15 and  believe that every child should have the right to learn the basics skills needed for swimming and water safety. That’s why we strive to teach as many swimteachers as possible. To do so, Joan van den Hengel and Rutger van de Pol have joined forces and founded The Swim Foundation. 


Joan van den Hengel

Joan has been the owner for over 20 years of one of the largest swimschools in the Netherlands. Having educated thousands of children and tenfold of swim teachers, she is a true swimming expert.  

Her driving energy and 'getting things done' mentality, combined with her strong urge to make this world a better place have lead to the founding of The Swim Foundation.

In her role as the President of the Swim Foundation she's driven to minimise the number of useless drownings in the most effective way by teaching as many swim teachers locally as possible.

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Rutger van de Pol

Rutger has lived in lower income countries for over 20 years and learned about the danger of drownings and lack of basic skills in local communities. As a former dive school owner and qualified dive instructor he understands the imminent threat of water and the importance of systematic teaching.  

After an international Advertising career in which he managed an agency of 120 staff and worked for brands like Danone, Nestle, Unilever and Lucky Strike he's now eager and passionate to give back good.

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