August 21, 2017

Partner Spotlight: Interview with Lauren Bordages, Director, Stop Drowning Now

Tell me a little bit about your organization and how long have you been a Pool Safely campaign partner?

blue and orange logo for Stop Drowning NowStop Drowning Now’s mission is to save lives through water safety education.

We believe that effective education is the most successful way to produce meaningful multigenerational reductions in fatal and non-fatal drownings. Drowning has complex social, economic and cultural aspects that only education can address. We believe drowning is preventable.

Pool Safely and Stop Drowning Now have a shared vision of water safety education as the two organizations worked together on, what is now, the Stop Drowning Now Water Safety Curriculum. An official partnership was formed in 2012.

What top 3 water safety steps or messages do you think are the most important for keeping kids safer in and around the water?

Through our curriculum and other materials, Stop Drowning Now teaches children about the Safer 3: Safer Water, Safer Kids and Safer Response. We believe that by breaking down the vast elements of water safety into these three message points, kids and their families think about the importance of water safety in a different way. We encourage families to ask, “Where is Your Risk?” when around any body of water. This message highlights the ever-present reality that aquatic activities always carry a drowning risk and that no one – no matter how skilled or experienced – is immune.

Safer Water: Install & maintain proper barriers around your pool. Four-sided isolation fencing around every pool could prevent 50% to 90% of childhood drownings.

Safer Kids: Everyone should learn to swim. No one should swim alone. There should always be an adult watching the water while children, in particular, are swimming or playing in and around a body of water. Do not rely on floatation devices, and never assume that anyone is “water safe.”

Safer Response: Learn CPR, first aid and rescue techniques. Keep an emergency action plan and a phone by the pool at all times.

How has your organization made a difference among consumers when it comes to drowning prevention?

Stop Drowning Now has made a difference through our in-classroom Water Safety Curriculum.  Children are taught the importance of water safety skills through the curriculum. While singing and dancing through activities and lesson plans, children are being taught the critical message: Drowning IS Preventable!

What is the most useful/your favorite Pool Safely resource?

There are many Pool Safely resources that Stop Drowning Now uses for public education and outreach efforts. However, the resource that we use the most is the Pool Safely Pledge. We use the Pledge and encourage our members to promote the Pledge to their network. The Pledge is a very effective and simple tool that we use to reinforce the water safety message of how to be safer when in, on or around water.

people in fish and starfish costumes

Timmy Tadpole, Sammy Starfish and Gilbert Guppy take the Pool Safely Pledge.

Why do you think it is beneficial to partner with CPSC and the Pool Safely campaign?

The national awareness that the Pool Safely campaign brings to the issue of water safety is outstanding, especially through the partnership of celebrities signing the Pool Safely Pledge. Partnering with CPSC and the Pool Safely campaign gives us opportunities to connect with other organizations and like-minded advocates. We all play a different role in the fight to end drowning. However, CPSC and Pool Safely provide a platform for all the different organizations to work together to save lives.