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The Gateway Family YMCA

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YMCA Splash at The Gateway Family YMCA Five Points Branch

The Gateway Family YMCA Teaches Kids How to be Safe around Water.

Union, NJ, June 30, 2014 --( More than 210 kids were taught how to be safer in and around water by taking part in YMCA Splash Week June 2, 2014 through June 6, 2014. The Gateway Family YMCA - Five Points Branch, in partnership with Rotary of Roselle/Roselle Park, delivered the program to all 3rd Grade students at Harrison, Polk and Washington Elementary Schools. During the classroom portion of the event, students learned about basic water safety and swimming skills that can help prevent accidents in pools, at the beach, while boating, or around other water environments. The week culminated with a free swim lesson for all 3rd graders followed by open swim for the children and their families.

According to Charles Cook, Aquatic Director, the benefits of the program extend beyond safety. “We’ve noticed that when kids learn to swim, it really boosts their self-esteem. In some cases, they’re overcoming some major fears. That makes them feel proud.”

The Y offered YMCA Splash in response to an important community need. Each year, an estimated 5,000 children ages 14 and under are hospitalized due to near drowning. Drowning is the third leading cause of death for children under age five.

“Splash is a great way for us to go out into the community and teach the importance of water safety,” said Cook. “So naturally we’re concerned about their safety and protection. Plus, the Y has been teaching people to swim for over a century. What better organization to teach kids how to keep safe around water?”

“Parental supervision alone is not enough to prevent water accidents,” said Danielle Cioffi, District Executive Director, ”Kids need learn how to take care of themselves, too. So many tragic accidents can be prevented if kids know the basics of safety and swimming.”

The YMCA Splash Week was a free program that included information on beach safety, backyard pool safety, and boating safety. YMCA Splash was one more way for the Y to help parents as well as kids. Families were invited to attend the free swim lesson and open swim so that they could practice the skills they learned during the week.

For more information The Gateway Family YMCA, please visit or contact the Five Points Branch at 908-688-9622.
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The Gateway Family YMCA
Colleen Clayton

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