“Step Into Swim takes swim safety seriously, and we applaud the Michael Phelps Foundation among all the learn-to-swim lesson providers for doing the same,” says Rowdy Gaines, three-time Olympic gold medalist and vice president of partnerships and development for the alliance, who leads the Step Into Swim initiative. “They put children first and teach them the skills they need to not only survive but thrive in the water.”
With Step Into Swim’s latest grant, the Michael Phelps Foundation will offer swim safety lessons to more than 400 children in underserved communities and instill the lifesaving skill of learning to swim.
“I was first introduced to the water through a water-safety program, and I am committed to helping expand access to that same learn-to-swim program through our IM program,” says Michael Phelps, founder of the Michael Phelps Foundation. “We are proud to partner with Rowdy Gaines and the PHTA’s Step Into Swim initiative to help teach more children to feel comfortable and confident in and around the water.”
In addition to swimming skills, the Michael Phelps Foundation’s IM program provides a comprehensive curriculum that includes goal-setting and healthy living lessons for children.
In 2022, Step Into Swim raised over $750,000, which provided grants to more than 60 facilities in 46 states and funded swim lessons for 23,500 children. The initiative has gifted more than 300,000 swim lessons since 2012 through YMCAs, Jewish Community Centers, Boys and Girls Clubs and more.