Olympic champs throw a lifeline to poor kids who can’t swim
Olympic champs throw a lifeline to poor kids who can’t swim This June 2015 photo provided by the USA Swimming Foundation shows Olympic gold medalist Cullen Jones giving a swimming lesson to a child in Nederland, Texas, as part of the USA Swimming Foundation's Make a Splash program. (USA Swimming Foundation via AP)
Olympic champs throw a lifeline to poor kids who can’t swim
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Missy Franklin, Cullen Jones, Rowdy Gaines and a handful of other Olympic champions are climbing into the pool this summer. They want to help American kids learn how to swim.
 
They've got plenty of work to do.
 
The USA Swimming Foundation's most recent survey was released May 31. It found nearly 64 percent of African-American kids, 45 percent of Hispanic kids and 79 percent of children in families that bring in less than $50,000 in annual income have little or no swimming ability.
 
The foundation is issuing $324,000 in grants this year. They will go towards its Make A Splash program. The grants will help fund reduced-cost swim lessons. These will go to more than 25,000 children at 71 pools. The grants are spaced across 25 states. The foundation has provided more than $4.3 million since 2007 to help fund learn-to-swim programs across the country.
 
"We need to keep a sustained effort to introduce children to swimming. And drive the important message that learning to swim can save your life," said Debbie Hesse. She is the USA Swimming Foundation executive director.
 
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 10 people drown every day in the United States. About a quarter of those are younger than 14. The CDC says African-American children drown at a rate nearly 5.5 times higher than white children.
 
The study is a follow-up to one first conducted by researchers at the University of Memphis. That was in 2010. In that survey, 70 percent of African-American children and nearly 60 percent of Hispanics had little or no swimming ability. The numbers have improved slightly over the past seven years. But they still paint a harrowing picture.
 
"The end goal is to create real solutions designed to ensure children are safer in the water. Especially minority youth who are at a higher risk of drowning," said Carol Irwin. She is the study's principal investigator.

Source URL: https://www.tweentribune.com/article/tween56/olympic-champs-throw-lifeline-poor-kids-who-cant-swim/

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why is swimming a bigger challenge for some kids?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (46)
  • Caelan-bla
    10/19/2017 - 02:20 p.m.

    I think that swimming is a bigger challenge for some kids because they just don't have the strength or the confidence to swim. They could be frightened of drowning and I think this program will really help them to get over their fears. Another reason could be that their parents or caregivers don't have the money to provide them with swimming lessons to teach them. Some countries have more poverty than others. Therfore, many children don't know how to swim because of financial issues. I feel that this program will really help these children and will benefit them in a great way!

  • Susan-bla
    10/19/2017 - 03:38 p.m.

    This article was about a fundraiser called Make A Splash Program. In this fundraiser olympic swimmers teach poor children how to swim. I think that this is a very important fundraiser. As said in the article learning to swim can save your life. Also the fundraiser allows the prices of swim lessons decrease so that the parents or guardians of these children can afford this.

  • Trenna-E2
    11/02/2017 - 11:56 a.m.

    This story is about how white kids are teaching black kids how to swim.Black kids drowned at a rate at 5.5 times faster than white kids. They teach 25,00 kids at 71 pools in 25 states! They have made 4.3 million since 2007! They named this program the Splash program. I would give it 5 out of 5stars because I think this is a great cause and what they are doing is a big change from when Martian Luther King Jr. was around. They gave a lot of detail. This would have to be one of the most interesting stories I have read. It is really inspiring to help the world and be a really big community. I think this would a story for anybody. Have fun reading it:)

  • Kellyf-bru2
    1/05/2018 - 02:01 p.m.

    Swimming can be a challenge for some kids but it takes hard work and dedication to complete the task. Kids may not have the work ethic or drive to learn. Learning how to swim could be difficult for anybody. Kids can have a lack of focus as well and may not be able to learn as quickly as others. Parents may also be pushing there kids to do what they want them to do instead letting them choose what they want to do.

  • Rileyp-eic
    1/19/2018 - 11:32 a.m.

    This passage is amazing. I never thought about how many kids can't swim. I'm glad people are helping kids learn to swim.

  • EliV-dec
    1/31/2018 - 09:32 a.m.

    Its it so cool that these kids that don't have to muck in there life can have two do something to do.This is cool because of how much money they got from the donation from the people.

  • AngelMV-jac
    2/08/2018 - 01:40 p.m.

    Swimming is a bigger challenge for some kids because not all kids know how to swim. And it is also very important for them to learn how to swim because just in case they want to go to the beach or somewhere like a waterpark they need to learn how to swim because something might go wrong if the water is too deep.

  • KevinH-jac1
    2/08/2018 - 01:40 p.m.

    Swimming is a bigger challenge for some kids because they might have never had swam before or they have a problem with swimming above and below the water because probably never had swimming lessons.In paragraph three found nearly 64 percent of African-American kid 45 percent of Hispanic kids and 79 percent of children in families pay a lot of money to pay for swimming lessons.

  • DannaV-jac
    2/08/2018 - 01:43 p.m.

    Swimming is a bigger challenge for some kids because it is great that Olympic champions or professionals want to teach american kids how to swim, because 79 percent of children in families that bring in less than 50,000 for little and no swimming ability.

  • BreanaN-jac
    2/08/2018 - 01:43 p.m.

    Swimming is a bigger challenge for some kids because some parents don't enough money to get there child in swimming class,or some children don't fully understand how to swim and they are scared they might drown.

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