Drowning is the number one cause of accidental death for infants and young children between the ages of 1-4. – U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Bear Paddle’s mission is to save lives by teaching children how to swim. Learning water safety skills at a young age is crucial as children are exposed to water every day, no matter where they live.

Bear Paddle Swim School is pleased to announce it has become a Swim School Provider with Hope Floats Foundation. Together, Hope Floats Foundation and partner swim schools are committed to fundraising and providing scholarships for high-quality swim lessons for low-income children and their families in their communities.

The equivalent of thirteen school buses full of children die each year in the United States due to drowning. Studies at the National Institute of Health show that swim lessons can reduce the risk of drowning by 88%.

“There’s a huge need for swim lessons, and the kids that need them the most – lower socio-economic level kids – they’re not getting them,” said Cindy Tonnesen, founder of the Hope Floats Foundation. She continued, “We are saving kids, but there are more we need to reach, and we have the ability and resources to do it.”

Bear Paddle Swim School is excited to pay it forward by supporting and offering scholarships for swim lessons in our community. Hope Floats Foundation began to pilot the scholarship program in September 2017. With 26 partnerships currently secured in 13 states, Hope Floats hopes to serve thousands of children who would not otherwise have access to the life-saving gift of swim lessons.

About Hope Floats Foundation – Hope Floats Foundation is a nonprofit founded in 2016 committed to impacting the statistic on worldwide drowning. The Hope Floats model is a simple, sustainable way for swim schools to provide scholarships for high-quality swim lessons in their community. To learn more about the Hope Floats Foundation and see a listing of swim school partners, please visit

Save a life today! Make a donation to Hope Floats Foundation and save the life of a local child in need. Hope Floats provides scholarships for swimming lessons for children in our community. Give the life-saving gift of swim lessons!

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