May 2016:


TheA Chance for Children fairy tale book has three aims; to be a hymn to human empowerment, to celebrate the inspirational work of Greg Bonann and Tai Collins and to become a means for drowning prevention and water safety education. For these reasons, in 2015 the Secretary General of Public Health in the Ministry of Health included the fairy tale book in theHellenic National Water Safety Program created by Stathi as free e-learning module. In 2016, the book was completed and formed a water safety project. The project “A Chance for Children” was approved by the Ministry of Education, Research and Religion. It aims to reach about 500,000 primary school children in Greece and millions others worldwide.

Bob Burnside


Moses Kalanzi and Swim Safe Uganda celebrated IWSD by going around educating the youth about being safe around water.

Also, recently, they have created a strategy  to provide a massive awareness campaign through the country on aquatic survival by passing information about water safety inside of the school system.  Water safety education will be a part of every school’s curriculum beginning in 2017.


Thirty students, instructors, and volunteers gathered this morning.  The event was done in collaboration with the Tamarin Youth Centre, Tamarin Village Council, and Surf Lifesaving of Mauritius and sponsored by Rajesh Cooshna, President of the Tamarin Village Council and Viraj Ramharai, International Lifesaving Trainer and Water Wise Instructor.

“This is our 5th year we are organising the International Water Safety Day in Mauritius. Every day we should celebrate the International Water Safety Day in Mauritius, this will keep our youth active.” – Viraj Ramharai

Mauritius IWSD




May 2015:


Shaun and Miriam, along with Dr. Angela Beale and Janelle Atkinson, visited Kingston schools to spread drowning awareness and teach water safety rules.  Shaun & Janelle were also interviewed on the SportsMax Zone.

Norfolk, Virginia

Nate teamed up with Sail Nauticus and Norfolk Public Schools to put on a Water Safety Carnival.  Two-time Olympic swimmer James Bernard Walsh spoke about how swimming has impacted his life.  Former Head Coach for the Special Olympics World Summer Games, Jim Brinkman, also volunteered his time and expertise.



Broward County, Florida

This year on May 15th, Diversity in Aquatics (DAP) gave the Moran Club a fun and educational day to remember. Thaddeus Gamory, DAP Councils Chair, convened a group of aquatic professionals from as far away as California and Philadelphia who engaged 235 members as they rotated through seven stations; Lifeguard/Ocean rescue, drowning prevention, water polo, competitive swimming, triathlon, SCUBA diving and marine science. Each member received a card with the 10 Water Safety Rules as well as a gift bag with coloring books, swim caps and other items. More importantly, they learned about aquatics careers and water safety.  THIS WAS ALL DONE WITH NO WATER.

Among the presenters was Miriam, who is a Club Alumni and attended a Club on an army base in Germany. She is a coach and teacher in the D.C. area. Charles Lumpkin is a retired coach, spring board diver and SCUBA diver who runs the record breaking Classroom Under the Sea. Charlie grew up in the Boys Clubs of Philadelphia. Rhonda Marable of Oakland, California is a former member of the US National Water Polo team and currently works for USA Swimming. The Department of Health, American Red Cross, Swim Central, Deerfield Beach Ocean Rescue, BSO and Boca Raton Aquatics Department was also present. The School Board of Broward County recognized DAP with a resolution for International Water Safety Day at their June 9th meeting.

deerfield IWSD Broward County IWSD Resolution-page-0




May 2014:

St. Croix

May 13-16. IWSD, joined by Olympians Kate Ziegler and Janelle Atkinson, will be visiting 15 schools and teaching 5,000 children about drowning awareness and water safety education. In conjunction with St. Croix Dolphins Swim Team hosted on the beautiful island of St. Croix 


For two weeks, Nate, along with Patti & Jamie Kilgore from Oregon, led a learn-to-swim project on the remote Maldivian island of Eydafushi.  This is captured and documented in Jon Bowermaster’s documentary, “Sink or Swim: Learning the Crawl in the Maldives

From Oceans 8 Films:
“Despite living just a couple feet above sea level, many of the locals here never learn to swim. With the support of the SLOW LIFE Foundation and the Soneva Fushi Resort, our goal was to get moms and kids more confident in the water, in part as a means to impress upon them the importance of taking better care of the beautiful ocean that surrounds them.
At the end of the two weeks, the forty-eight third-graders and eighteen burka-clad mothers who had come each day for lessons put on masks, fins and snorkels and, for many of them, were for a first time able to see the water world below the surface. Like many corners of Planet Ocean the Maldives suffer from a variety of ills, mostly manmade: Overfishing. Plastic pollution. Rising sea levels due to a warming ocean. And acidification. Teaching these incredible families to swim was hopefully a first step towards encouraging them to be even better guardians.”




International Water Safety Day May 15, 2014: St. Croix, Virgin Islands

Free Swim Malidives


Viraj Ramharai, Vice President of International Life Savers Africa and founder of the Surf Life Saving Association of Mauritius, conducted a water safety lesson on May 15th with dozens of school children in attendance.


May 2013:

IWSD organizes a group of aquatic professionals to speak on behalf of H.Res. 658.  This bill was introduced by Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-PA) and co-sponsored by Rep. Howard Coble (R-NC) in support of the goals and ideals of International Water Safety Day.

List of presenters:

Wanda Butts, 2013 CNN Hero and founder of The Josh Project
Henry Reyes, President of the International Surf Lifesaving Association (ISLA)
Scott Wolfson, US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)
Connie Harvey, American Red Cross
Dr. E. Newton Jackson, President, American Association for Physical Activity and Recreation
Dr. Angela Beale, Council for Aquatic Professionals
Kimberly Charis, National Association of State Boards of Education
Kevin McCartney, Boys & Girls Club of America
Mike Espino, YMCA of the USA
Alicia McConnell, United States Olympic Committee
Debbie Hesse, USA Swimming Foundation

May 2012:

Shaun teaches, with the help of friend Chris Bey, a 90 minute class on water safety education at the Maria Claudi Falcone School in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Oddly enough, the school’s pool had been closed for years and was filled with desks and chairs.