Whether you’re bathing your child in a sink or tub, swimming in your backyard or at your local beach, water is fun for children and adults alike. Humans, especially young children are drawn to water, fascinated by it – toys float in it, it’s sparkly and it often resembles a giant bathtub which subconsciously brings up happy memories for young children. It is also a place where safety needs to be the highest priority.
There are many aspects to water safety and no person is immune to the dangers of water related accidents – not adults, not lifeguards, not Olympians – a water related accident can happen to anyone. Since there are so many layers and categories to water safety we have broken them into sections to better understand the risks and ways to reduce them in your daily life. This blog will focus on general water safety – check back for more in this series on residential pools, open bodies of water and standing water in and around your home.
- Learn CPR – Hopefully you are never in a situation where you need to use this training but if you do find yourself in a situation where someone requires CPR whether it is near water or not you will be thankful that you were educated, training and prepared.
- Have a designated water watcher – Never leave a child unattended near or in any body of water. Children should be within arms length of an adult and you should never rely on an air filled flotation device, noodle, arm floats or ring to keep a child safe in water. 23% of drownings happen during family gatherings, make sure to designate a water watcher during this time and work out a rotating schedule, or hire a lifeguard for your large family parties.
- Take swimming lessons – Swim lessons and “knowing how to swim” does not substitute for a water watcher or lifeguard but it can reduce the risk of drowning by 88%.
- Don’t consume alcohol – Being in charge of watching out for the safety of others in the water is a massive responsibility and should be taken seriously, your judgment should not be impaired while you are doing so.
- Know what to do in an emergency – Take the time to discuss an emergency action plan with your family for every possible scenario.
The full impact of COVID-19 is still unknown but what we do know is that right now, staying home is the best thing we can do for ourselves, our local communities and furthermore our country. Out of every tragedy and every negative comes a positive and a new outlook on what really matters. During this difficult time many of us are called to help others as we often feel helpless while we are stuck at home, even though sitting at home is helping more than we’ll ever truly know. It is easy to lose sight of the positives and get caught up in our own “what if” scenarios, which is why we urge you to focus on what you can control and what you can contribute to these aid and relief efforts. We have compiled a list of organizations that are helping our communities as well as the greater Tri-State Area, there are many amazing groups to support and this is certainly not all of them, we urge you to do what you can to help and support the causes nearest to your heart.
Front Line Appreciation Group
The Front Line Appreciation Group was born out of the COVID-19 pandemic in an effort to feed our frontline health care workers while also supporting local restaurants. The group was founded by Liz Bernich of Chatham, NJ along with Gina McGuire of Madison, NJ who raised over $100,000 in its first two weeks of existence. Since the group started it has inspired communities around the country to do the same for their local health care workers and restaurants by opening their own local FLAG chapters, with nearly 70 chapters in 20 states FLAG is feeding our health care workers and supporting local businesses daily! To find your local FLAG chapter or to start a chapter of your own check out their website here.
Tunnels to Towers Foundation
The Stephen Siller Tunnels to Towers Foundation was founded after 9/11 to support first responders and their families. Since 2001 they have not stopped supporting the Tri-State Area, especially first responders and their families whenever tough times hit whether they are on a smaller personal scale or on a larger scale like after Hurricane Sandy and now during COVID-19 they are always there to back those on the front lines. Just this morning they have announced a $3 million pledge stating, “In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Tunnel to Towers Foundation has established the COVID-19 Heroes Fund and is pledging $3 million to support frontline health care workers by providing meals, personal protective equipment and, should tragedy strike, financial relief through temporary mortgage payments on homes of health care workers who lose their lives due to COVID-19 and leave behind young children”. To learn more about their pledge and the relief efforts they are leading head on on over to their site.
Chester/Mendham Food Pantry
The Chester/Mendham Food Pantry is one that our families and staff support all year round and are in desperate need of donations during this pandemic. While many of us are used to giving their preferred method of monetary donations to this group right now they are asking for physical donations of goods instead. Their updated list of requests can be found on their Facebook page.
Global Empowerment Mission
GEM has partnered with New Yorker, Bethenny Frankel and BStrong to support over 250 hospitals in The US in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Their main mission is to get PPE to as many hospitals as they can as fast as they can by working directly with manufacturers. As of yesterday, BStrong was finalizing the delivery of 1,000,000 3M n95 masks for Mayor Bill de Blasio of NYC. Yesterday, they also delivered 1,000,000 units of full body protective gear to the New York Health Department through Governor Cuomo. The hot spot of this virus is just across the Hudson from us and we have so many NJAC parents that work on the front lines of fighting this virus that are being supported by foundations like GEM! Check out their COVI-19 initiative and updated US relief states on their website.
This is just a short list of organizations that are supporting our local Tri-State Area, there are many out there and we know everyone is doing their part the best they can right now. We would love to hear of more community groups that you are supporting during this time! We are here to help!
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