YMCA, WJXT team up on Safety Around Water campaign

By Joy Purdy - 5:30, 6:30 & 11 p.m. anchor

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The beginning of pool season always brings with it a little nervousness in the News4Jax studios, with many of us preparing our minds for the tragedies that happen each year: child drownings.

This year, WJXT is joining forces with local YMCAs, working to help make sure your kids know what to do in a water emergency.

The new campaign is Safety Around Water, which starts with a free swim safety test for your child with swim experts at participating YMCAs during regular operating hours. 

The test includes swimming the length of a pool, treading water and jumping into the pool. Results of the test will let kids and caregivers know a child's swim skill level.

If a child passes the swim safety test, they get to ring a special cow bell at the Y, and upload a photo to the Y's website for a chance to win a free six-month YMCA membership. If a child doesn't pass the test, he or she could be eligible for free swim lessons at the Y.

The goal is to have 5,000 kids pass the Y safe swim test by the end of the summer (when school starts in mid-August). So far, 1,279 children have passed their tests.

You can visit the Y for the swim safety test throughout this summer or visit FirstCoastYMCA.org for more details.

YMCA water safety infogram

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