To help combat drowning, the YMCA of Greater Houston will partner with KPRC2 to host a free citywide swim class on Saturday, June 8 for kids ages 3 and older to technically assess their swimming abilities, offer a taste of swim lessons at the Y and provide parents with important tools for drowning prevention.
“We find year over year that parents tend to overestimate their children’s swimming abilities,” YMCA District Vice President Rosemary Lengefeld said in a news release. “It’s vital to have a child’s skills assessed.”
According to the YMCA, drowning is the second-leading cause of death for children under the age of 14 in Texas. For every child who dies from drowning, another five receive emergency care for non-fatal submersion injuries. Of the 91 child drownings in Texas last year, Harris County experienced the most with 10. So far this year, 20 children have drowned in Texas.
All Ys in Greater Houston are participating in the event, including the Harriet and Joe Foster Family YMCA at 1234 W. 34th St. Parents are encouraged to visit YMCAHouston.org/swim-safe or visit the nearest center to secure a spot. Walk-ins are welcome if space is available. Swim class times will vary by location.
“We have identified eliminating drowning as one of our strategic initiatives,” Lengefeld said. “We also teach 30,000 children swim lessons annually and find that first and foremost, kids need to work on the basics that will keep them safe when they are in any body of water.”