May is Water Safety Awareness Month: It’s time to focus on keeping kids safe around the water!

April 25, 2016


The Y is making it easier to help children learn fundamental water safety skills by offering a free swim lesson in May to introduce them to water safety. If you're new to the Y and decide to enroll your child in a summer swim lesson that day, we have a special discount offer just for you!"

There are a few skills that all parents instinctively know to teach their children to keep them safe and healthy: looking both ways before crossing the street, washing your hands with soap and water or eating the right amount of fruits and vegetables every day, for example.

But for too many parents, safety in and around water is not on the list, and that’s something we need to change. To help, the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago is offering free swim lessons this May during National Water Safety Month. For a list of centers, dates and times, see the table below. Plus, if your child participates in the free swim lesson and you decide to register him/her for summer swim lessons during our free swim lesson event you will save $10 of the summer swim lesson (just mention the code SHERO). We’re also asking all parents and adult to take the Water Watcher pledge and to help spread the word about this pledge to others to help keep kids safe around the water. 

Fatal drowning is the second-leading cause of unintentional injury-related death for children ages one to 14 years old. The problem is particularly acute among minority communities. African American children ages 5 to 14 are three times more likely to drown than their white counterparts. The disparity is partly due to the lack of swimming experience among these children.

According to a recent national research study conducted by the USA Swimming Foundation and the University of Memphis, 70 percent of African American and 60 percent of Hispanic children cannot swim, compared to just 40 percent of Caucasian children.

The Y is committed to reducing water-related injuries, particularly in communities where children are most at risk. These classes are just one of the many swim programs that millions of people from toddlers to adults take advantage of at the Y’s more than 2,200 pools across the country.

If you know how to stay safe in and around water, swimming can be a lifelong source of fun and exercise. Instead of keeping your children away from water, help them learn fundamental water safety skills by enrolling them in lessons. These classes can provide them a new, exciting way to keep active and meet new friends.

Buehler YMCA Saturday, May 21, 12:30-2 p.m.
Elmhurst YMCA Saturday, May 21, 1:30-2:30 p.m.
Foglia YMCA Friday, May 13, 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Fry Family YMCA Saturday, May 21, 12:30-2:15 p.m.
Greater LaGrange YMCA TBA
Hastings Lake YMCA Friday, Apr 22, Noon-2 p.m.
High Ridge YMCA Saturday, May 21, 2-4 p.m.
Indian Boundary YMCA Friday, May 13, 5:15-5:45 p.m.
Irving Park YMCA Saturday, May 21, 2:30-3:30 p.m.
Kroehler Family YMCA Saturday, May 14, 11:30 a.m.-Noon
Lake View YMCA Saturday, May 14, 1:30-2:30 p.m.
Lattof YMCA April 26-May 14, 9:30-11:30 a.m.
Leaning Tower YMCA Saturday, May 21, 2-4 p.m.
Sage YMCA May 14-15, 1-2:30 p.m.
South Chicago YMCA Saturday, May 14, Noon- 2 p.m.
South Side YMCA Saturday, May 14, 1-3 p.m.
West Communities Friday, May 13, 5-7 p.m.