Float for life

By: Jenn Hatcher

It’s swimming weather and there’s a special program teaching babies and toddlers water safety.

It’s the YMCA’s, Float for Life.

Program Director, Melissa Kinzie says, “They’re not fearful but they’re not fearless anymore either, they have a very healthy fear of the water.”

Five-years ago, they teamed up with the Joshua Collingsworth Foundation.

Two–year–old Joshua drowned in a backyard pool, in Lincoln in 2008.

Kinzie designed this life saving program after meeting with the family.

Kinzie says, “When it comes to water safety it’s a life and death decision and we want them to be safe in the water.”

In one–on–one 15 minute sessions, the youngsters start with a back float and finding the wall.

They then will learn some basics, like forward and backwards crawl.

Jennifer Quaranta’s daughter, three–year–old Stefania, has been taking the classes for two years.

Quaranta says, “On lesson 10, she was moving her arms and kicking her feet getting to the side of the wall.”  Later saying, “I can come to the pool and feel a little more comfortable if we’re doing a family swim and not have to hold on to her the entire time, I can let her have fun and just swim in the water.”

The classes are offered year round.

The cost ranges from about 25 to 50 bucks for a 6 week session.

More information can be found here: http://www.ymcalincoln.org/ymca-main-left-menu/swimming/float-life

More information on the Joshua Collingsworth Foundation can be found here:  http://www.joshuamemorial.org/