Whether it’s a lake, a river, or a pool… water can be dangerous.
With the weather warming up, the YMCA is holding their annual Learn to Swim for Free Program for Erie City kids.
The Brian Lee Crosby Learn to Swim Program is open for registration, offering free swim lessons this summer to Erie City kids ages six months to 18-years-old.
“Our signature program is SAW Program, which stands for Safety Around Water. The basic elements of that program are safety skills so they will learn to float and learn to blow bubbles,” said Brandie Bauder, Coordinator for the Learn to Swim Program.
Drowning is the second leading cause of accidental death among children under the age of 14.
The vice president of the YMCA said that learning to swim is an essential skill for anyone going near water.
“It takes seconds for there to be an accidental, and so a program like this is designed to not only help children learn to be safe in and around water, but help parents feel more comfortable as well,” said Tammy Roche, Vice President of YMCA of Greater Erie.
One of the ways to prevent anything bad from happening is to teach the younger kids to ask for permission before getting in the water.
“From the littlest to the little, before they go into the water they have to say ‘can I go into the water?’ ‘Yes you may’ and if they don’t ask or are unable to ask the parent has to get them ready to go. So are you ready to get into the water? Yes I am,” said Bauder.
More than 80 kids have been registered since Monday morning. In order to enroll more kids, more instructors are needed this summer.
“Anyone also that might be interested in teaching swimming lessons, we do have a number of swim instructor positions open,” said Roche.
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The first session of swim lessons will be held on Monday, June 20.