Recreation Management Rec Report - The Newsletter for Recreation, Sports & Fitness Facility Managers

Feature Story

January 2021


USA Swimming, U.S. Masters Swimming Partner to Support Learn-to-Swim

The USA Swimming Foundation and U.S. Masters Swimming announced a new philanthropic partnership to grow support for adult learn-to-swim efforts.

The Foundation, which is the philanthropic arm of USA Swimming and has a mission to save lives and build champions, has long dedicated itself to raising funds and awareness for childhood-learn-to-swim programs. In January 2021, U.S. Masters Swimming will move its fundraising efforts for adult learn-to-swim programs from its USMS Swimming Saves Lives Foundation to the USA Swimming Foundation. Bringing all learn-to-swim fundraising efforts under the USA Swimming Foundation umbrella will create a greater generational impact by providing swim lessons to people of all ages.

If a parent doesn't know how to swim, there's only a 19% chance that a child in that household will learn how to swim, according to a 2009 study by Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, and more than one-third of American adults can't swim the length of a pool, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The combined efforts of U.S. Masters Swimming and the USA Swimming Foundation aim to change those statistics.

"We are excited about this new partnership, which is such a natural extension to a cause that is so near and dear to us," said Dr. Cecil Gordon, chair of the USA Swimming Foundation board of directors. "Providing more opportunities for people of any age to learn to swim while developing a passion for the sport is the type of transformative impact we aim to make."

U.S. Masters Swimming will continue to own and administer adult learn-to-swim curriculum and certification for instructors, and provide resources to programs offering adult lesson throughout the United States, and the USA Swimming Foundation will continue to provide water safety education, grant support to youth learn-to-swim programs and fundraise for National team athletes.

"Our efforts complement each other nicely," said U.S. Masters Swimming CEO Dawson Hughes. "This partnership will allow us to help more people become water safe and experience the sport we all love."

As part of the partnership, Hughes will join the USA Swimming Foundation Board of Directors as a non-voting member. Jay DeFinis and Jeff Moxie from the USMS Swimming Saves Lives Foundation Board of Trustees will join the USA Swimming Foundation board in a voting capacity, bringing years of fundraising experience for adult learn-to-swim initiatives to their new roles.


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