By Pacific Island Times News Staff
To combat Guam's devastating statistic of at least one fatal drowning a month, Amphibious Aquatics today announced a new water safety initiative set to launch in the new year.
“Embarking on a new year, we strive to improve, learn new skills and build community,” said Andy Lee, head coach of Amphibious Aquatics, which is spearheading the Drown-Free Guåhan, or DFG, initiative.
“We welcome anyone who is eager or excited to learn: parents, grandparents, caregivers, adults and our youth to develop the basics of how to float and remain calm in the water," Lee said, announcing the opening of registration.
To be held in Tumon Bay on Jan. 13 and 15, 2024, the 30-minute sessions will focus on basic water safety, developing awareness, and learning how to minimize the risks of drowning.
The sessions will have two groups. One targets youth ages 5 to 17 in coordination with a parent or caregiver; the other is a separate training for adult non-swimmers 18 years and over.
"This is just the beginning; awareness and skill-building is key to ensuring our community is safer and can enjoy themselves in the pool or at the beach," Lee said.
Amphibious Aquatics has teamed up with the Guam Visitors Bureau, safety agencies and private businesses to launch the program.
“Part of GVB’s mission is to develop Guam as a safe place to live and visit,” said Carl T.C. Gutierrez, president of GVB. “This includes our beautiful waters which can be dangerous at times, especially for those without proper awareness and skill. We appreciate and welcome Amphibious Aquatics’ proactiveness and applaud their initiative to work together to educate the community and promote a Drown-Free Guåhan.”
“We’re overwhelmed and grateful for the outpouring of support for a Drown-Free Guåhan and the opportunity to start the new year off right,” said Jennifer Camacho, Amphibious Aquatics president.
“Our team recently returned from an SLP swim competition in Manila and learned more about their ongoing Drown-Free Philippines initiative. This effort aligns with the Amphibious mission to provide youth and adult training and build water confidence, conditioning and skill in our community," she added.
Registration is now open online for basic 30-minute training sessions between 8:30-10:30 a.m. on January 13th and 15th at www.amphibiousguam.com. A $20 registration fee will be assessed per child/parent pair or adult participant and sessions will be held in Tumon Bay.