Visa is pleased to partner with the USA Swimming Foundation on the “Make a Splash Initiative” to raise awareness on the important issue of learning to swim and water safety.
Our goal is to provide the opportunity for every child in America to learn to swim and to do so with the right safety tools. Why is this so important? Drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional death for children under the age of 14 and the leading cause of unintentional death for children between the ages 1-4. But, once kids have swimming lessons, they are 88 percent safer in and around the water.
Team Visa athletes Connor Jaeger and Missy Franklin are gearing up for the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and took time to share some key tips to keep everyone safe in and around the water this summer:
Connor Jaeger currently holds the American record in the 1500-meter freestyle and has some Top Tips to share for summer swimmers:
- Never leave a child unattended in a pool or spa and always watch your child when he or she is in or near water
- Teach children basic water safety tips
- Have a telephone close by when you or your family is using a pool or spa
- If a child is missing, look for him or her in the pool or spa first
- Share safety instructions with family, friends and neighbors - See more here.
Missy Franklin, who won 5 medals—4 of which were Gold—in her Olympic Debut in London 2012 got her start in the water at six months of age.
"I first got involved in swimming because my mom grew up in Nova Scotia and the water’s freezing up there and so she never really had the same experience of swimming when she was growing up and she never really learned how to swim. She’s always felt pretty uncomfortable around the water and unsafe and she really did not want me to feel like that so when I was six months old she signed us up for a Mommy & Me swim class and I couldn’t get out of the water."
Here are some of Missy’s Top Tips:
- Teach your children to swim!
- Get an adult if you go near the water
- Always swim with a buddy
- If someone is in trouble in the water call for help, don’t go in!
USA Swimming Foundation has more than 775 Make a Splash partners across the country. To find swimming lessons near you and learn more about how to Swim Safely, go to www.usaswimmingfoundation.org.