The USA Swimming Foundation announced today a multi-year partnership with Swimways, the leading manufacturer of pool and outdoor recreational products, to raise awareness about water safety and teaching children the essential life skill of learning to swim.
“We share a common goal of lowering drowning rates by helping children be safer around the water,” said USA Swimming Foundation Executive Director Debbie Hesse. “We’re looking forward to sharing the USA Swimming Foundation’s message of learning to swim on a national stage through Swimways’ Learn to Swim products that will be distributed through major retail chains.”
To kick off the partnership and in celebration of National Water Safety Month, The USA Swimming Foundation will partner with Swimways on Saturday, May 21 for their fifth annual National Learn to Swim Day, with Olympic Gold Medalist and USA Swimming Foundation Ambassador Rowdy Gaines as the host of the swimming celebration.
National Learn to Swim Day will take place at the Local Make a Splash Partner, Princess Anne YMCA located at 2121 Landstown Rd. Virginia Beach, VA 23456 from 10:00 am – 11:00 am. As a result of the new partnership, the YMCA will receive a grant to provide the resources and swim lessons necessary to teach children in the local area how to swim.
Ten people drown each day in the United States and it’s the second leading cause of unintentional death for children under the age of 14. With 70 percent of African-American children, 60 percent of Latino children, and 40 percent of Caucasian children with low or no swimming ability, the USA Swimming Foundation has a goal of providing swim lessons to 1 million children annually through the Local Partner network by December 31, 2017. As an official sponsor of the USA Swimming Foundation, Swimways will be working with the USA Swimming Foundation to raise awareness about the importance of teaching all children to swim.
“We are excited to team up with the USA Swimming Foundation to help elevate a very important conversation about water safety, especially as we approach Memorial Day weekend and the summer season,” said Anthony Vittone, Senior Vice President, Swimways. “Our goal is to provide the information, tools and resources necessary to enable kids nationwide to learn this essential life skill.”
Joining the celebration is Olympic Gold Medalist and USA Swimming Foundation Ambassador, Rowdy Gaines, who will give a private swim lessons to local Virginia Beach children. Part of the USA Swimming Foundation’s mission is to provide free or low cost swim lessons so that every child in America has the opportunity to learn to swim.
Through its Make a Splash initiative, the USA Swimming Foundation provides the opportunity for every child in America to learn to swim – regardless of race, gender or financial circumstances. The USA Swimming Foundation partners with learn-to-swim providers and water safety advocates across the country to provide swimming lessons and educate children and their families on the importance of learning how to swim.
“As someone who practically lives in the pool, I truly understand the importance of ensuring kids know this critical skill at an early age,” added Gaines. “Swimming can not only save lives, but it can build confidence and teach kids about determination.”
Families can learn more about National Learn to Swim Day, find water safety tips, learn to swim videos, resources and swimming aid products by visiting www.TeachMeToSwim.com.
For more information of how to support The USA Swimming Foundation, visit: www.usaswimmingfoundation.org.
About the USA Swimming Foundation
The USA Swimming Foundation serves as the philanthropic arm of USA Swimming. Established in 2004, the Foundation works to strengthen the sport by saving lives and building champions— in the pool and in life. Whether we’re equipping our children with the life-saving skill of learn-to-swim through our Make a Splash initiative, or providing financial support to our heroes on the U.S. National Team, the USA Swimming Foundation aims to provide the wonderful experience of swimming to kids at all levels across the country. To learn more, visit www.usaswimmingfoundation.org.
About Swimways Corp.
Based in Virginia Beach, Virginia, Swimways is a privately owned leisure and recreational water products manufacturer whose mission is making free time more fun through innovation. It is a company rich in traditional values and respected for the quality and integrity of its products and services. With distribution in over 20,000 storefronts, it markets three unique brands: SwimWays®, Kelsyus® and COOP®. With offices in Hong Kong and the United States, the company’s diverse staff is passionate about developing fun and engaging products for kids. They are equally passionate about making sure kids are safe in and around the water and believe learning to swim is an important life skill. Swimways has been helping kids learn to swim for over 40 years — longer than anyone else (except parents, of course!). For more information about Swimways, visit www.Swimways.com.
Swimming news courtesy of USA Swimming.