Resident decreases drowning risks with gift

Resident decreases drowning risks with gift

Twice as many kids receive free swimming lessons

Thanks to a $25,000 donation from attorney Wayne Hogan, a San Marco resident, Waterproof Jacksonville will provide double the number of opportunities for kids to receive free swimming lessons this summer.

Hogan is funding a pilot project with Duval County Public Schools to teach swimming lessons to every student enrolled in summer school at Woodland Acres Elementary School, which includes at least 400 children. In addition, 150 military dependents will also receive free lessons. Other program partners are sponsoring lessons and providing free swimming lessons too.
“We live in a beautiful city, surrounded by water, our beaches, the St. Johns River, with pools and creeks and lakes and ponds throughout our neighborhoods. Sadly, Florida keeps getting ranked number one in drowning deaths for young children. Two-thirds of those tragic losses happen between May and August,” Hogan said. “Teaching kids to swim can change those statistics, but this is not about numbers. This is about each child we can reach, each child we teach. A life lost because a child doesn’t know how to swim is a family and a community tragedy.”

The lessons are part of a unique expansion of Waterproof Jacksonville made possible by Hogan’s donation, which will help pay for the JaxParks Summer Night Lights program as well as enable JaxParks to double the number of free swim lessons provided this summer.

The Police Athletic League is also funding swim lessons for 200 PAL participants. JaxParks, through funding assistance from Safe Kids Northeast Florida, is offering lessons for about 450 youth. The YMCA will provide lessons for another 300, including 50 military dependents.

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