[SUMMIT, NJ] – The Summit Area YMCA (SAY) wants to ensure that water safety doesn’t get lost in area's ongoing eagerness to return to a “normal” summer. As temperatures rise, kids want to cool off, whether that’s in home pools, ponds, lakes, rivers, streams, or oceans. And that means the risk of drowning is ever present. With May being National Water Safety Month, the SAY is encouraging parents and caregivers to reinforce the importance of water safety and equip their kids with the essential skills to keep them safe in and around water.
“As ‘America’s Swim Instructor,’ the SAY annually teaches more than 400 children valuable water safety and swimming skills,” said Terri Clinton, COO of the Summit Area YMCA. “Now more than ever, it’s important to remind parents and caregivers that water safety needs to be top-of-mind as families start to return to their favorite summertime activities.
As part of National Water Safety Month, the SAY is encouraging parents to play an active role in promoting water safety and providing five tips to ensure a safe and enjoyable swimming experience for all.
1. Never swim alone or without a water watcher. When children are swimming, make sure they are actively supervised at all times. Teach your children that they should only swim in locations where a lifeguard is on duty, or where a responsible adult agrees to watch the children in the water without distractions.
2. Supervise your children whenever they’re in or near water. Whether it’s bath time or taking a dip in a pool or lake, make sure your children are within arm’s reach at all times.
3. Don’t engage in breath holding activities. Children should not hold their breath for a prolonged amount of time while swimming, as this can cause drowning and has several other severe physical side-effects.
4. Wear a life jacket: Inexperienced or non-swimmers should wear a Coast Guard-approved life jacket.
5. Don’t jump in the water to save a friend who is struggling in deep water. If a child finds their friend in deep water unexpectedly, their natural instinct may be to jump in the water to try to save them. Even if a child is a great swimmer, a panicked person will overpower them, pulling the rescuer underwater. The Y’s Safety Around Water program teaches the “reach, throw, don’t go” concept of using a long object to reach for them and pull them to safety. By using this technique children can help their friend without compromising their own safety.
To learn more about the SAY's Safety Around Water program and Swim Lessons, please contact Michael Creegan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FOR AGES 6 MONTHS TO 16 YEARS
At the YMCA, we build strong, secure, connected and confident swimmers. The Seals Swim School is available for Summit Area YMCA Members and Non-Members ands run all year long allowing your swimmer to focus on what's most important - learning to swim! Enjoy a worry free one time sign up for all of your swim lessons. Our swim programs work on developing sequence based skill sets that organically build on one another. Students learn faster, are safer in water sooner, and progress quickly through the various stages until they succeed.
In 1886, we were founded as the Young Men's Christian Association, but today, we are The Y. An association that values, and is made stronger by, its diverse people. We stand for youth development, healthy living and social responsibility — For a better us. We are committed to creating equal opportunity for all regardless of gender, age, disability, income, ethnicity, sexual orientation or religious affiliation. We strive to create a welcoming and inclusive culture in which our four core values — responsibility, honesty, caring and respect — are integral to everyday operations.
Each year, as one of the area’s leading 501(c)3 charitable organizations, the Summit Area YMCA serves more than 15,000 individuals with our free and fee-based programs and services in an area spanning the New Jersey communities of Berkeley Heights, Gillette, Millburn, New Providence, Short Hills, Springfield, Stirling and Summit. Our history is rooted in working side-by-side with our neighbors to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. Through the generosity of our members, donors, and partners, we are able to offer financial assistance for our programs and services to those in need.