YMCA of the North Partners with USA Swimming Foundation, Toyota and Hennepin County on Mobile Swim Lessons Initiative in Twin Cities
Children in underserved communities receive free swim lessons
August 17, 2021
Minneapolis – The YMCA of the North, a leading nonprofit dedicated to strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, is partnering with the USA Swimming Foundation, Toyota, Hennepin County and Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office to bring free swim lessons to families in underserved communities.
Through Mobile Swim Lessons Powered by Toyota, YMCA instructors and lifeguards with safety equipment will travel to designated low-income apartment complexes with swimming pools to offer water safety lessons this summer. According to a USA Swimming Foundation study conducted by UNLV and the University of Memphis, 79 percent of children in families with less than a $50,000 income have little to no swimming ability.
Children who reside in or near these apartment complexes will have the opportunity to learn the lifesaving skill of swimming during the summer or after school this fall, thus reaching those who may not otherwise take swimming lessons due to lack of transportation. With Toyota’s sponsorship of the program, the USA Swimming Foundation and Toyota can provide swim lessons for up to 500 children, through vehicle leases and sponsorship fees.
“We’re proud to be a part of this initiative and help bring not only swimming lessons and water safety to low-income communities, but also provide these children the opportunity to learn about swimming,” said Dedra DeLilli, group manager, sponsorship, integration & activation, Toyota Motor North America. “At Toyota, we believe that when given the opportunity and resources, one can truly accomplish anything. Our hope is that these children feel more confident and safer around water thanks to the Mobile Learn to Swim program.”
“The YMCA is committed to saving lives through water safety programs and education,” said Glen Gunderson, president for the Y. “We are excited to partner on the Mobile Swim Lessons program with the USA Swimming Foundation, Toyota and Hennepin County so we are able to offer this program free of charge so all can access life-saving lessons and skills.”
“Once again our friends at Toyota have stepped up to help when we needed them most, and we are extremely grateful for their generosity,” said Shana Ferguson, chief commercial officer for USA Swimming. “There is glory in winning competitive swim medals on the global scene, but there is dire need for providing access to swim lessons for those who need them locally. Toyota has figured out how to help us do both in their own unique way. We are humbled by their continued engagement with our sport and our communities.”
The Mobile Swim Lessons program will be offering water safety sessions for kids age 5-12 years old at these locations in August:
951 E 77th St, Richfield, MN 55423
8/16-8/26 9 a.m., 9:40 a.m., 10:20 a.m. and 11 a.m.
Blooming Meadows South
1930 E 86th Street, Bloomington, MN 55425
8/16-8/26 1:00 p.m., 1:40 p.m. and 2:20 p.m.
To register, visit http://www.ymcanorth.org/swimming/the_mobile_swim_lessons.
To learn more about hosting Mobile Swim Powered by Toyota, please contact Shannon Kinstler at Shannon.Kinstler@ymcanorth.org.
About the USA Swimming Foundation
The USA Swimming Foundation serves at the philanthropic arm of USA Swimming and U.S. Masters Swimming. Established in 2004, the Foundation works to strengthen the sport by saving lives and building champions. Whether we are equipping our children with the life-saving skill of learn-to-swim through our learn-to-swim initiative, supporting adult learn-to-swim programs or providing financial support to our heroes on the U.S. National Team, the USA Swimming Foundation aims to provide the opportunity for every person in the U.S. to learn to swim. To learn more, visit http://www.usaswimming.org/foundation.
Toyota (NYSE:TM), creator of the Prius hybrid and Mirai fuel cell vehicle, is committed to building vehicles for the way people live through our Toyota and Lexus brands. Over the past 60 years, we’ve built more than 40 million cars and trucks in North America, where we have 14 manufacturing plants, 15 including our joint venture in Alabama (10 in the U.S.), and directly employ more than 47,000 people (over 36,000 in the U.S.). Our 1,800 North American dealerships (nearly 1,500 in the U.S.) sold nearly 2.8 million cars and trucks (nearly 2.4 million in the U.S.) in 2019.
About the YMCA of the North
The YMCA of the North is a leading nonprofit dedicated to strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Established 165 years ago, the Ys provide life-strengthening services across the greater Twin Cities metro region, southeastern Minnesota and western Wisconsin communities. The 29 Y locations and program sites, eight overnight camps, 10-day camps, and more than 90 child care sites engage more than 370,000 men, women and children of all ages, incomes and backgrounds. To learn more about the Y’s mission and work, visit http://www.ymcanorth.org.