In recognition of May as National Water Safety Month, the Hampshire Regional YMCA encourages parents to take an active role in fostering a relationship between their children and swimming. As America’s Swim Instructor, the Y is the most accessible community resource to prevent drowning and encourage a lifelong enjoyment of swimming—teaching more than one million kids a year swimming and water safety skills.
Drowning is the leading cause of death for children 1 to 4 years old, and the second leading cause of death for children from 5 to 14 years old. 60% of kids who drown are within 10 feet of safety, while 88% of children who drown do so under adult supervision. Research shows that participation in formal water safety and swim lessons can help reduce drowning risk.
In addition to offering swim lessons to all ages through ongoing, year-round programming, the Hampshire Regional YMCA will hold a series of free Safety Around Water classes during the week of June 3. The program aims to engage parents about the importance of water safety skills and provide more children access to water safety lessons. Preschool sessions (ages 3-5) involve both child and caregiver, while youth sessions (ages 6+) do not require a caregiver to be in the water.
Through Safety Around Water, the Y hopes to further bridge cultural and access gaps that can prevent some children from learning important water safety skills. Each 30-minute lesson is designed to build water safety intelligence, address specific safety topics and reinforce skills through fun activities. Registration is required at the Y Welcome Center.