As part of the Y’s commitment to reduce drowning rates and keep kids safe in and around the water, the Beaufort–Jasper YMCA of the Lowcountry will provide scholarships for swim instruction and water safety to children from underserved communities in Beaufort and Jasper counties in 2019.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, fatal drowning is the second-leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 14. 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, 64 percent of African-American children, 45 percent of Latino children, and 40 percent of Caucasian children have no or low swimming ability.
“Educating children how to be safe around water is just as important as teaching them to look both ways before they cross the street,” Lou Bergen, Aquatics Director at the Wardle Family YMCA, said in a release. “The Y 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 100 years, pioneering group swim lessons in 1906. The Wardle Family YMCA continues to help youth and adults experience the joy and benefits of swimming, so they can be healthy, confident and secure in the water.
To learn more about Wardle Family YMCA swim programs including lessons, swim team, and Aqua Camp, contact Lou Bergen at 843-522-9622, ext. 236 or firstname.lastname@example.org.