There are a lot of things that I learned to do at an early age. I was reading before I started kindergarten, got pretty good at German before leaving Germany in middle school, and am a fantastic teacher. The one thing I never learned how to do is swim. Even though I don’t swim, I find myself to be in the minority among my family and friends. Hopefully after my lessons this summer, I’ll be making waves just like my peeps in a few months.
Ayva has already been in lessons for the last three summers, and we have definitely noticed a change in her confidence level around water. That’s the most important thing, too. Swimming, although it is a fun activity, can be dangerous if you aren’t versed in water safety. We live in Northern California where we’re just a few minutes from the beach, and we go on vacation several times a year. Being around water is inevitable. Educating Ayva and ourselves about how to be safe in and around water is a priority for Terrence and me.
I already knew to stay alert when we’re at a pool or the beach. Even if it seems like there are plenty of people watching, a tragedy can happen so quickly. Ayva knows that she is not to go swimming if there isn’t an adult around. There are a few things that I didn’t know, but I learned thanks to The ZAC Foundation. Established to prepare children and families for a lifetime of water safety, The ZAC Foundation is named for Zachary Archer Cohn who died in 2007 at the age of 6, after his arm became trapped by the suction of a pool drain. As a parent, you never think that something like this could happen to your child, but Zachary was an accomplished swimmer who loved water. His heartbreaking and untimely death is a message to all of us that water safety has to be taken seriously.
How many of you have ever even thought about drain safety? A broken or loose drain cover could lead to entrapment. According to The Zac Foundation, “An entrapment occurs when a person or an object attached to a person, like ornamentation on a bathing suit or long hair that is not pulled back, is sucked into a pool or spa drain and becomes stuck by the drain’s force.” All swimmers should stay away from drains. The Zac Foundation gives information on what actions to take to if you come upon a broken or missing drain cover.
In addition to that, you can find all of The ZAC Foundation’s education and advocacy programs (mostly targeting children ages 5-9), water safety tips, resources and programming through ZAC Camps for parents and children of all ages (birth to teenagers).
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.