About Us


WATER ORPHANS is an international accredited training facility where you can register your entire family for training in our heated in-door pool. We are a small family-owned business with friendly, patient, internationally qualified and experienced instructors. We teach in small groups and ensure dedicated attention by our qualified instructors. Our training is constantly monitored by PADI to ensure that we meet the high PADI standards. Our instructors receive regular refresher training to keep their skills current and in line with international trends.

Any person from six months may register for the PADI Swim School Curriculum and from age eight you may register for one of the PADI Scuba Diving Course options. The PADI courses are fun, it builds confidence and teaches discipline. Younger students learn through play. We equip our students with life-saving skills.

Our lessons are skill based and accommodate students who may require more time to master a skill. Each student is given enough time to achieve a required benchmark in order to progress to the next level. Our instructors have a passion for people.

Swim students are taught proper swim technique from their first lesson. They practice rescue skills and the proper use of life jackets. We jump in the pool, fully clothed, to simulate rescue scenarios in a secure environment. Our students learn to use a snorkel, mask and fins from a very young age, they learn proper breathing techniques while swimming and we teach them scuba sign language under water, just for fun!

Older swim students have the option of taking part in the Midmar Mile swim. We introduce our students to scuba diving and they have the option of qualifying as emergency first responders.

We are #lostonlandbornforwater


We are a passionate group of instructors, changing lives daily!


  • Owner of WATER ORPHANS
  • PADI Instructor Development Course Staff Instructor
  • PADI Swim Instructor Trainer
  • Emergency First Response Instructor Trainer

Phillip got hooked on scuba diving in 2010 when he accidentally agreed to pay for an Open Water Diver course for himself and his wife.  He did more than 250 recreational dives before he decided to leave his career in the building industry to go PADI PRO in 2014.  Since then, Phillip has been living his best life – spending as much time in the water as humanly possible! If he is not teaching swim students, he is instructing scuba divers.  Phillip is at his happiest when he can use his talents to influence people’s lives in a positive way.


  • Water Orphans Office Manager
  • PADI Swim Instructor, Emergency First Response Qualified

Tammy joined the WATER ORPHANS family in 2021.  She was originally appointed to manage our administration office but we soon realised we could not keep her out of the water and she has been teaching afternoon classes since then.  Tammy has a passion for people and enjoys her daily check-ins with our clients.  She manages our accounts with finesse and even finds time to spoil the WATER ORPHANS team with multiple cups of coffee throughout the day.


  • PADI Swim Instructor, Emergency First Response Qualified
  • PADI Dive Master

Ruanco qualified as a PADI Swim Instructor in 2019 and all our students fell in love with the energetic way he presents lessons.  There is just no end to Ruanco’s energy and enthusiasm!  Ruanco got hooked on scuba diving in 2021 and went PADI PRO in 2023 when he qualified as a PADI Dive Master.  He is busy working towards achieving the PADI Scuba Diving Instructor qualification.


  • PADI & Swim South Africa Swim Instructor, Emergency First Response Qualified
Marijke joins the Water Orphans team in March 2024 – it is her love for coffee that makes her fit right in (yes, we drink a lot of coffee!). Marijke originally qualified as a Swim SA Instructor and has actively been teaching since 2009. She is passionate about teaching and skilled to develop our students stroke skills from a very young age. Joining our team has provided Marijke with the opportunity to qualify as an international PADI swim instructor and an Emergency First Responder. Marijke’s vibrant and energetic personality together with her wealth of experience makes her a force to be reckoned with in the water.


  • PADI Swim Instructor, Emergency First Response Qualified

Despite managing her own business, Andrea makes time every day to teach in the afternoons at WATER ORPHANS.  Andrea became part of the WATER ORPHANS furniture when she first brought her daughter, Nadine, for fitness stroke lessons in 2017.  Teaching is not a profession for Andrea but a passion.  She qualified as a PADI Swim Instructor in 2018 and has been teaching afternoon classes at WATER ORPHANS since then.  Andrea and Nadine often join us on our scuba diving adventures, locally and internationally, as Nadine is an experienced scuba diver and Andrea has a passion for snorkeling, especially in the Ocean.