DMSS founder and Zambian swimming National record holder, Darrell Morton began offering private lessons to school students at a time where swimming as an organised sport in Botswana was non-existent. There was no Swim Association, no National team and no official swim school in the entire country. Darrell's vision saw potential in a country that had already made huge strides in athletics and immediately began sharing his vision with his swimmers and sporting bodies such as the BNSC and BNOC.
A turning point was when Darrell took a handful of swimmers to Sasol Winter Champs in SA. Darrell tasked some parents from the group to form an independant competitive club which later became known as Kubu (Hippo in Setswana). Darrell's swimmers swam under the name Kubu at this gala. Although DMSS club swimming would eventually branch off in a different direction, it was this gala that shaped a very definite future for both DMSS and Botswana swimming.
In time Rosheen, Darrell's sister, joined him on deck and within a year DMSS grew to over 200 swimmers, testimony to the powerful combination of Darrell's passion for stroke technique and Rosheen's love of children! She remained an integral part of DMSS for many years.
The time was right for Botswana swimming to go beyond a private school level. Darrell met with Mr Solly Rekeiletsang, then an officer at BNSC
(now BNSC Chairman), to form a swim association. With support from Solly, Darrell drafted what was the first
constitution of the BSSA and submitted this to the registrar. Momentum slowed
with processing delays, but it was eventually taken up by the group of parents that attended the Sasol gala. After 2 years of waiting, the BSSA was born with John Felix as the first president. Darrell then offered to set up and run the very
first BSSA National Gala held in 2004.
A milestone for DMSS & Botswana Swimming! To date DMSS has won this gala 15 years in a row.
In 2007 Darrell's wife, Loredana, joined DMSS and a few years later took over the learn to swim program. Loredana's corporate services background also gave DMSS the impetus to enhance its
administration & marketing.
With this momentum, it made sense to re-brand & change our name from Splish Splash. Much thought went into our logo design & in 2007 our new name was born -
''Darrell Morton's School of Swimming'' with its signature font and iconic whirlpool ball!
2008 was another milestone year for DMSS and Botswana Swimming. For the very first time, two swimmers coming out of DMSS structure reached the very highest level of swimming and were selected to represent Botswana and attend the Olympics Games in Beijing China. Coach Allison La Grange, now DMSS Program Manager, attended the games as Botswana National Coach. Swimming at an international level was still very new to Botswana, and to this day, the lessons learned in 2008 were invaluable to the growth of swimming in the country.
In 2012 we invested in the World's best learn-to-swim programme, SwimAmerica. After a rigorous application process and a substantial monetary investment, DMSS became the sole licenced SwimAmerica
centre in Botswana.
In 2015, Darrell Morton became accreditedwith the very highest level of certification, ASCA Level 5. A level 5 swim coach needs to meet criteria in years of experience, examination requirements & must have at least one swimmer who achieves a level 5 time standard. Coach Darrell remains the only coach in Botswana with full level 5 accreditation.
In 2016 we launched our Online booking system & soon after the DMSS APP!
2017 - the time was right for DMSS to construct our very own facility - Home of DMSS. Ideally situated in Sethloa Village, right next to Airport Junction Center, this state-of-the art facility has set DMSS miles apart as the swim school of choice in Botswana!
In 2019, to mark our 20 year Anniversary - We renewed our corporate logo! The new iconography portrays ''DMSS'' emerging out of a refined iconic whirlpool ball, as if exploding out of the water in a perfect stroke! The blue fade is inspired by the impression of water in a pool, from a dark depth to a light surface. It still honours the old logo representing the brand value DMSS has built for 20 years!
HALL OF FAME
Just 2 of many iconic DMSS swimmers: James Freeman & Naomi Ruele