Make a splash at Mount Vernon YMCA

Maritza Correia.

The USA Swimming Foundation, in conjunction with Mayor Ernest D. Davis of Mount Vernon, N.Y., the Mount Vernon YMCA, and the Mount Vernon Department of Recreation, will hold “Make a Splash: Mount Vernon,” on Saturday, May 26 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Mount Vernon YMCA.

Hosted by Olympic Silver Medalist Maritza Correia, the community-oriented street fair and swimming instruction event will be held during Memorial Day weekend, a time in which many pools around the country will open to the public.

Correia will promote the important message of water safety education and accessibility of learn to swim programs with a focus on what programs are available in the greater Mount Vernon area.

A member of the 2004 U.S. Olympic Team, Correia is the first African-American female to make a U.S. Olympic swim team, and the first to earn a medal in swimming at the Olympic games.

“Events like ‘Make a Splash: Mount Vernon’ further the primary goals of USA Swimming and the USA Swimming Foundation, which is to grow the base of the sport of swimming and promote the importance of water safety education,” said Talia Mark, USA Swimming’s Multicultural Marketing Manager. “Because of this country’s sobering drowning statistics—that 10 people drown every day in the U.S. and that 60-70 percent of African American and Hispanic children don’t know how to swim—it is of the utmost importance to hold events like this that not only expose these facts but aim and lay the groundwork to change them.”

All Mount Vernon and surrounding community-area families are encouraged to attend “Make a Splash: Mount Vernon” on Saturday, May 26, 2012. On this day, a street festival will feature local and national vendors (U.S. Army, Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon, Golden Krust, Top Apple Fruit and Juice Bar, Mount Vernon Hospital, among others), several interactive displays for children of all ages, and will also give families an opportunity to get in the water and learn from swim instructors and Olympian Correia in the pool at the Mount Vernon YMCA.

“This is such a great opportunity for the residents of Mount Vernon,” said Mayor Ernest D. Davis. “Our young people will have an opportunity to meet a person who through hard work and dedication was able to be a part of history.”

The following statistics demonstrate the need for action and the importance of “Make a Splash: Mount Vernon”:

Drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury-related death for children between the age of one and 14. (Centers for Disease Control, 2003)

60-70 percent of African-American and Hispanic kids do not know how to swim (USA Swimming Foundation / University of Memphis 2010)

Ten people drown in the United States every day. (CDC)

Two-thirds of all drownings occur between May and August. (Orange County California Fire Authority)

Approximately 75 percent of child drownings occur because of a lapse of adult supervision of less than five minutes.

Children in the ethnic minority are nearly three-times more likely to drown than their Caucasian peers. (CDC, 2003)

For more information, and to get connected in your area with one of the over 520 Make a Splash partners across the country, please visit www.makeasplash.org.

More from Around NYC