Life Jacket Loaner Station Installed at Hamilton Pool

We are excited to share this prevention win with you! Together with our amazing partners at Capital Area Trauma Regional Advisory Council and Travis County Parks a brand new life jacket loaner station opened at Hamilton Pool Preserve and has been immediately utilized by visiting families! We couldn’t be happier to have received this news as these jackets are crucial to open water safety.

Timeline of events:

  • Summer 2016 – 3 drownings (2 fatal and 1 non-fatal) occur at Hamilton Pool Preserve
  • Travis County Parks closes Hamilton pool to swimming
  • Travis County Parks calls Colin’s Hope to help get a life jacket loaner station up and running at Hamilton Pool as well as Reimers Ranch Park
  • Colin’s Hope assists with important messaging on station signage
  • May 1, 2017 – Life Jacket Loaner Station opens and is ready for use!

We are thrilled to continue stocking these stations with life saving devices all year! Thank you to CATRAC for donating life jackets, and to Travis County Parks for putting these stations together. Drowning is preventable, and together we can make a ripple in water safety!

Check out this interview by KEYE-TV, our CBS News affiliate, conducted lakeside by the life jacket loaner station at Mansfield Dam Park with Colins’ Hope Executive Director Alissa Magrum! ***2 corrections: a) Colin’s Hope did not put up the loaner station, but we do keep them stocked. b) We only assist with stations in central Texas.

Best Day Ever Party To Prevent Drowning Supports Preschool Program

Saturday, April 1 was a spectacular night for Colin’s Hope, as we raised essential funds to support the Preschool Swim Safety Program.

Thank you to our guests, our sponsors, and our volunteers for making a HUGE RIPPLE at the Best Day Ever Party to Prevent Drowning!

What an amazing evening for all who attended. Thank You so very much.

While we are still tallying up the totals and tidying up numbers, we believe that with the community’s support and generous contributions, we raised over $100,000 for Colin’s Hope!  This is absolutely incredible and means that so many more children will be able to participate in our Preschool Swim Safety Program. We will be able to provide more families with life saving water safety education and more life jackets to loaner stations at area lakes.

We are so energized to do all we can to continue our fight to prevent drowning.  

We celebrate the memory and life of the children we have lost to drowning (Colin, Tristan, Averie, Grace, Sarah… ) and the vibrant lives of those who have survived a non-fatal drowning (Jack, Mason, and Brady). We use these angels and children as our motivation to do all we can to achieve our vision of a world where children do not drown. We are so grateful that our supporters share this vision with us.

Please talk to your family and friends about water safety. Please change your behavior to be safer around water.  We challenge everyone to visit our website for water safety resources and take our Water Safety Quiz to become a Water Guardian.

Finally, we thank you everyone for helping us to exceed our fundraising goals while raising incredible awareness for drowning prevention.

 

BEST DAY EVER!
The Colin’s Hope Team

 

Colin’s Hope Teams Up With Kwaddle

For the first time ever, Colin’s Hope is teaming up with Kwaddle, a local business dedicated to helping parents find amazing extracurricular opportunities for their children, to help share our water safety messages across the city.

Kwaddle is a new startup born right here in Austin, TX. It helps parents find the best summer camps, activities and classes for children. Over 500 businesses are listed and over 2,000 different activities, camps and family-friendly events are listed on Kwaddle.com.

Each year Kwaddle sponsors a child to go to summer camp (up to $300 value) as part of their mission to help educate and enrich children. To enter the contest simply sign up here, and use the Colin’s Hope code: Amplify-colinshope

Thank you Kwaddle for helping to Amplify Colin’s Hope during the 2017 Amplify Austin Campaign!

Exciting News About the 2017 Got2Swim!

Colin’s Hope is excited to announce a partnership with Open Water Planet to host The 9th Annual Colin’s Hope Got2Swim 10K on Sunday, September 24, 2017 as part of the Open Water Planet Triton Swim Series

This partnership meets the need for more and safer open water swimming events and elevates our shared mission of water safety and drowning prevention. We are ecstatic!

The Colin’s Hope Got2Swim 10K is a pledge-raising swim in Lake Travis (brand new location), that starts and finishes at Mansfield Dam Park. 

PROCEEDS FROM THE GOT2SWIM 10K SUPPORT THE COLIN’S HOPE 2017 DROWNING PREVENTION INITIATIVES:

  • Expansion of the Colin’s Hope innovative and effective Preschool Swim Safety Program (which tripled in size last year and continues to expand!) 
  • Targeted water safety education card distribution to preschools, child care centers, swim schools, and families throughout Texas and beyond
  • Maintenance and expansion of the Colin’s Hope life jacket loaner program at popular area lakes (including the Mansfield Dam Park where the Got2Swim starts and finishes.
  • Water safety and swim safety classes for children across Texas
  • Expansion of Colin’s Hope safety signage at public and community pools
  • and so much more!

Swimmers can participate as a solo swimmer or form 2-person or 3-person relay teams. This epic open water swimming journey will raise incredible awareness and $50,000 for Colin’s Hope. Each swimmer will be accompanied by a water safety team including: a personal Water Guardian kayaker and open water certified life guards. 

Each swimmer is required to raise or contribute at least $500 (in addition to the registration fee) to Colin’s Hope. We know it will be a BEST DAY EVER on the water to prevent drowning.

Registration is now open, and spots are limited as this will sell out.  Grab your Water Guardian or your relay teammate(s) and sign up. You can see all the details and register here

We know that drowning is preventable and with your help we can help make even bigger waves in water safety and drowning prevention in 2017. We hope to see you in the water for the Colin’s Hope 2017 Got2Swim 10K and hope you’ll consider traveling as a Colin’s Hope ambassador to swim in another Open Water Planet Triton event. I’m planning to take on the entire series!

Best Day Ever,

Alissa Magrum
Colin’s Hope Executive Director

C: (512) 294-3910
E: alissa.magrum@colinshope.org

Lost Creek Aquatics Supports Preschool Swim Safety Program

Lost Creek Aquatics helped Colin’s Hope end 2016 with a bang by supporting the Preschool Swim Safety Program. This is part of a year-round partnership with LCA that also gives their swimmers quality opportunities with Colin’s Hope throughout the year and educates LCA families about water safety.

Thanks to their tremendous fundraising efforts, Lost Creek Aquatics smashed their 50 student goal, and were able to sponsor 66 children for the program. That’s at least 3 preschool classrooms! During their team holiday event, LCA athletes and their families were able to donate swimsuits and goggles for kiddos that might them to participate in the program. Also, as a top competitive team in the country, LCA was able to invite Speedo swimmer Elizabeth Beisel and her Olympic medals to hang out with the team!

Check out this video that shows our preschool program in action. Thank you Lost Creek Aquatics!

Colin’s Hope

Colin’s Hope Trains Home Visitors of Texas HIPPY

Colin’s Hope was proud to train 140 Texas HIPPY (Home Instruction of Parents of Preschool Youngsters) home visitors from across the state to take our water safety education and resources directly to parents and children in their homes! A part of the AmeriCorps program, HIPPY home visitors provide parents with resources and education that will help them prepare their preschool-aged children for success. Partnerships like these are essential to the drowning prevention work Colin’s Hope strives for every day because this direct communication with families will truly increase our reach and impact while saving lives.

Thank you to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services for giving Colin’s Hope the opportunity to meet Texas HIPPY at the annual Partners In Prevention Conference this past September. We look forward to strengthening this partnership in the coming year.

LTHS Athlete Ambassadors Swim for Colin’s Hope

Last month, over 20 Athlete Ambassadors of the Lake Travis High School Swimming & Diving Team took on a 5000 yard challenge to raise funds for drowning prevention. These dedicated individuals pledged their time and talent to support the Colin’s Hope Preschool Water Safety Program, which provides local preschool students with water safety and swimming lessons.

Together, the LTHS team raised over $2,000! This amazing donation can provide 27 preschool children with 8 free lessons.

We are incredibly proud of all that the LTHS Swimming & Diving Team has done for Colin’s Hope and our local community! A special Best Thank You Ever and congratulations goes to Jacob, Kaley, and Zach for being the top 3 pledge raisers on the team. It’s not too late to support the LTHS Swimming & Diving Swim Raiser. Help them continue to make this the Best Day Ever by visiting their page today!

 

Austin-Travis County EMS Releases Drowning Report

Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services Responds to Drowning Incidents

Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services has released a report analyzing 6 years of A-TCEMS data on drowning incidents (those under 19 yrs of age) here in Central Texas. This was a collaborative effort with David Zane (Injury Epidemiologist with Austin/Travis County Health & Human Services), Doug Ballew (Austin/Travis County HHS), Captain Randy Chhabra of Austin Travis County EMS, Alissa Magrum (Executive Director of Colin’s Hope), and others, and is the beginning of more work together.

While the report only looks at drowning data when EMS was called or involved, it provides interesting insights into the types of drownings and that are occurring and where, looks at whether lack of supervision was a contributing factor, and recommends layers of protection (as Colin’s Hope recommends) in order to prevent drowning.

You can find the report here, or copy & paste the following link into your browser:  http://www.colinshope.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/EMS_drowningFINAL-report.pdf.

HBMS Students Prepare Life Jackets For Area Loaner Stations

On November 18, 25 Hudson Bend Middle School students prepared over 60 life jackets to be placed at area loaner stations as part of the school’s annual Day of Service.

Each year, HBMS partners with local organizations to give back their time and talent to the community that supports them each and every day. This year, Colin’s Hope was a proud beneficiary of their efforts.

Students met with the Colin’s Hope team and Travis County Parks‘ Officer Luiz at Mansfield Dam Park to learn about the importance of the lake’s life jacket loaner stations. These stations offer the park’s visitors an opportunity to borrow a US Coast Guard approved life jacket free of charge during their visit. To encourage the safe return of the jackets each one is stamped with a “please return” label, a project that Hudson Bend students excitedly took on.

Because of their work, Colin’s Hope has even more life jackets ready to drop off at area lakes – a free service that could potentially save a life.

To see some other projects and partners of Hudson Bend’s Day of Service, search for #HBPower on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, OR visit their Day of Service website.

Thank you to Raising Cane’s of Lakeway for providing lunch during the project, Hudson Bend Middle School, Vice Principal Kevin Malandruccolo, and to each and every student who gave their time to prevent drowning. It truly was a Best Day Ever!

life-jackets-1 life-jackets-2 life-jackets-3

Local Preschool Children Receive Free Water Safety Lessons

Colin’s Hope is partnering with the YMCA of Austin for the third year to provide free water safety education and swim lessons to over 600 children during the 2016 – 2017 school year.

Preschool children from Lucy Read Pre-Kindergarten, Dobie Prekindergarten Center, and Uphaus Early Childhood Center spend 2 weeks visiting their local YMCA for a total of eight classes. During the classes, students learn and discuss five important water safety habits:

  • Waiting for an adult before going near water
  • Learning to swim
  • Wearing a life jacket
  • Adults should always be watching, and
  • Staying away from drains

Children also spend 35 minutes each day with a trained swim instructor for 1-on-1 practice. These lessons are enhanced with songs, games, and interactive charts, and are provided in English and Spanish. Click below for a sneak peek of the program!

 

In addition to these lessons, the Colin’s Hope Preschool Water Safety Program includes a parent education piece. Parents and families of children in this program are invited to attend an information session at the beginning of each semester to learn about the program. At the end of each session, every child receives the Colin’s Hope water safety information card and Water Guardian Badge that can be used for future trips to pools or open water. Parents are also encouraged to attend each lesson to continue their education with their child.

Colin’s Hope is proud to sponsor local communities in an effort to share water safety awareness and, ultimately, prevent drownings.

Colin’s Hope