RIVERVIEW, Fla — We are heading straight into summer and while more people will be out in the water, the Spurlino Family YMCA is hosting water safety courses to teach kids how to swim and how not to drown.
“We live in Florida. There is water all around us, not just our pools everywhere around us, but there’s lakes, ponds, oceans and everybody needs to learn how to swim, everyone from the youngest kids to the oldest kids," Erin Gramm, Aquatic & Program Director for the East Pasco Family YMCA, said.
On Saturday, dozens of kids splashed, flipped and learned water safety and how to swim.
According to the CDC, drowning is a leading cause of death for children. More children ages 1-4 die from drowning than any other cause of death except birth defects.
“We go to the beach. We do have a pool. So I ensure that my child knows that if she’s in the pool and she accidentally takes a slip she knows how to get out of the pool to rescue herself," Dominique Cipriani, one mom who attended the course, said.
Cipriani told ABC Action News she jumped at the idea of water safety and swim lessons because she wants her daughter to feel confident around water rather than fear it.
“I always been growing up around the pool and I love to swim," 9-year-old Dayanna Cipriani, who participated in the water safety course, said.
Cipriani said swimming is fun and learning water safety can be too.
“I’m hoping that kids can understand more of the water and want to learn more about water and safety and how to swim so that when they get older at least they’ll teacher their kids or they’ll know how to swim instead of not ever knowing," Cipriani added.
The CDC said not knowing how to swim, lack of close supervision, and missing or ineffective fences put people at a higher risk for drowning.
The YMCA will offer swim courses throughout the summer.