Swim camp teaches life-saving skills to children

Camp honors memory of boy who drowned

SAN ANTONIO - The San Antonio Boys and Girls Club is one of 10 chosen for water safety camps sponsored by the Zac Foundation.

The foundation was started in 2008 in honor of Zachary Archer Cohn, a young boy who drowned in his parents' pool.

"Zachary passed away due to a pool drain entrapment. He was six years old (and) in their back yard swimming pool. Their purpose now is to encourage water safety and to make sure it doesn't happen to any other child," said Kirstan Dougher, a spokesperson for the ZAC Foundation.

More than 100 children between the ages of 5 and 9 years old are taking part in the four-day camp. During that time, they'll learn not only how to swim, but also about water safety.

"The hope is that they will learn water-safety skills that will save their lives or maybe the lives or somebody else," said Dougher.

According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in children ages 1-4 and the second leading cause in children 5-14.

The camp focuses on teaching kids about the A, B, C, Ds of water safety. That includes having and adult present when swimming, having barriers on pools, taking swimming classes and being aware of dangerous drains.

After the swim camp, it's hoped the children who participated will have the odds in their favor.

"If they ever run up against something when they get older or any years that they've got coming up , they'll know what to do," said Rafael Avilas with the San Antonio Chapter of American Red Cross.

For a list of recent stories Eileen Gonzales has done, click here.


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