Teaching Life Saving Skills
Mason had been uncomfortable and frightened to swim in the water. After we built a portable pool on the playground at Sunland Elementary, Mason attended every swim safety class, always wearing a smile on his face and eager to learn. At the beginning, though, Mason would sit on the pool’s shelf and hold onto it with all his might. Whenever it was his turn to swim with one of the Y’s trained water safety instructors, he was scared, clinging tightly to his teacher, and shouting, “Don’t let go of me!”
Within two weeks, Mason began to paddle, sometimes on his own. He had learned how to find the edge of the pool safely when in distress, and felt his fear subsiding as he began to ease away from his instructor’s embrace. Today, Mason is capable of swimming on his own, comfortable with putting his head under the water, enjoys blowing bubbles, and wants nothing to do with that pool shelf!
“Without the Y, I don’t know what we would have done,” said Mason’s mother. “The Y has truly saved my son’s life!”
As part of the Y’s Safety Around Water initiative (S.A.W.) and through the generosity of the Ken Gorvetzian family, the Y launched its Portable Pool program this summer on the campus of Sunland Elementary School.