As part of the Y’s commitment to reduce drowning rates and keep kids safe in and around the water, the YMCAs in Cobb will provide scholarships for swim instruction and water safety to children from underserved communities in Kennesaw, Acworth & Marietta.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, fatal drowning is the second-leading cause of death for children ages one to 14 years old. In ethnically diverse communities, the youth drowning rate is two to three times higher than the national average, according to a USA Swimming study. Additionally nearly six out of 10 African American and Hispanic/Latino children are unable to swim, nearly twice as many as their Caucasian counterparts.
“Educating children how to be safe around water is just as important as teaching them to look both ways before they cross the street,” said Tiffany Strickland, Aquatics Director, McCleskey-East Cobb YMCA. “The Y’s teaches children of all ages and backgrounds that water should be fun, not feared, and this practice not only saves lives it builds confidence.”
The Y has been a leader in providing swim lessons and water safety for more than 60 years. The YMCAs in Cobb County continues to help youth and adults experience the joy and benefits of swimming, so they can be healthy, confident and secure in the water. There are a variety of programs to choose, including pre-school, school-age and teen swimming lessons.
In addition to learning lifesaving water safety skills, children can increase their physical activity by swimming. Swimming also motivates children to strive for self-improvement, teaches goal orientation and cultivates a positive mental attitude and high self-esteem. It also teaches life lessons of sport and sportsmanship, so that children can learn how to work well with teammates and coaches and how to deal with winning and losing—skills that last a lifetime.