Saturday, July 21, 2012

Press Release

For more information contact: Shannon Smith, 860-550-4077

Swim Strong Foundation Celebrates Pool Safety Week

Swim Strong is delighted to share that we area recognized partner in the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission’s“Pool Safely” campaign. So proud of our team member Storm and all of his accomplishments to date! 

July 19h, 2012, New York, NY— The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission announces its “Pool Safely” campaign in conjunction with Pool Safety Week.  Swim Strong Foundation is joining efforts to encourage water safety and pool safety locally through its swim programs in Queens and Brooklyn.
According to The Consumer Product Safety Commission’s latest findings released earlier this summer, drowning is the #1 cause of death for children 1-4.  It is the 2Nd leading cause of death in all youth under 14.  Minority children 5-14 are three times more likely to die from drowning than Caucasian children.  Meet Storm
Swim Strong Foundation wants to do something about this. For the most part drowning IS preventable. All year long they provide low cost swim programs to NYC youth that teach swimming skills and water safety in an effort to eradicate drowning.  This week, parents have been invited to get in the pool with their children for special, pool safety workshops. 
If you or your child is not currently involved in a swim program, there are still steps they can take to make sure they practice pool safety:

          • Stay within an arm’s reach of your children at all times in and around the pool
            • Never swim without a lifeguard. 
            • Assign a “Water Watcher
           • Never swim alone
            • Take swim lessons at any age before regularly using a pool
            • Learn CPR
            • Don’t mix alcohol with swimming and pools
            • Know the depth of the water and don’t swim in deep water if you’re a beginner

Join the celebration by following these tips during Pool Safety Week and all summer.  If you would like to sign up for swim lessons please contact Shawn Slevin at  Swim Strong and Pool Safely. 

And to promote awareness, I am happy to invite adult family members of CURRENT program members , who do not swim, into the pool with us for a 30 minute Introduction to the water this Saturday at both FMP and FRHS. You will need flip flops/pool shoes/or bare feet, your suit cap and goggles and towel.

At FMP, it will be during the 8-9 time frame. (Remember at FMP that you can’t use the lockers…bring your bag out with you onto the deck) At FRHS, we need to be a bit flexible as it could be somewhere in the 11:30-12:30 timeframe.

Pls do respond to me as to who wants to GET Wet and celebrate Pool Safety Week with us

Coach Shawn

Thursday, July 5, 2012

more than just hair

 More Than Just Hair

It is believed that the straighter the hair, the prettier the women.  So, what about the rest of us?  Many African Americans have been trying to adapt the European idea of beauty, rather than establishing their own.  Rejecting and renovating something that needed no correction.  From Madam CJ Walker who invented the hot comb to Garret A. Morgan who invented the hair relaxer, history has continuously supported this unnatural transformation, further deteriorating the beauty of natural hair. 
Today natural hair is shunned upon, and many are faced with professional and personal generalizations because of it.  This fear of possible rejection causes many women to endure extreme measures to keep hair “beautiful and acceptable”.  Even if these decisions keep them from experiencing some of life’s greatest pleasures. Many of these decisions create a barrier in their children’s life, a life that does not include interaction with water.   In a recent survey done by national diversity specialist for USA Swimming, parents were a key influence on their children's swimming habits. These habits are infused by a mix of fear of water and money wasted to maintain the “beautiful and acceptable” hair during and between swim sessions.  If society‘s opinions were put aside and natural hair was embraced, many more African Americans could fully experience the many pleasures that life has to offer that involved water. But instead this fear of the water is passed from one generation to another.  At least 65% of parents with non-swimming children couldn't swim themselves. Proving that this connotation placed on natural hair is putting children and adults at high risk.
So, where should the line be drawn?  Is being seen as “beautiful and acceptable” at all times more important than you and your child’s well being. I believe not.   No barrier, biases, or challenges should be great enough to prevent anyone from enjoying the life saving and changing benefits of swimming. Embracing our own definition of beauty, would open a world of unseen opportunities for many African Americans. Breaking down cultural barriers could be as simple as wearing an alternate hairdo during the summer.  The stylists I spoke provide a few recommendations to keep hair healthy and manageable while enjoying the water:
·         Wear hair Natural or Braided
·         Wear swimming cap
·          Moisturize hair before and after swimming
·         Limit use of Heat
At Swim Strong Foundation our goal is for EVERYONE to learn how to swim.   We are bringing down the barriers of access, price and cultural challenges. Isn’t it time for YOU to get wet and learn to SWIM STRONG?!?