|On Wednesday, May 22, Kaiser Permanente will kick-off the sixth year of Operation Splash in the City of Chula Vista. Kaiser Permanente is providing a grant of $55,000 to the Friends of Chula Vista Parks and Recreation to fund free swim lessons for over 1,100 children. Operation Splash began in 2006 in Los Angeles, and with its expansion to Bakersfield, Ventura, San Bernardino, Riverside, Coachella Valley and Chula Vista, the program has now grown to a $2.5 million commitment to improve swim safety and expand access to public pools throughout Southern California. Chula Vista has received a total of $310,000 in grant funding over the past six years.
“This program is a demonstration that through good community partnerships, we can make a difference in the lives of children. In addition to promoting safety, Operation Splash encourages children to be more active, and the more active they become, the healthier they will be,” said Dr. Paul Bernstein, chief medical officer of Kaiser Permanente’s San Diego Medical Center Area.
Chula Vista Mayor Cheryl Cox stated, “The water safety education provided in Chula Vista through Operation Splash has proved effective in strengthening kids' swimming abilities and in accident prevention around pools. Our recreation staff has embraced the Operation Splash program and I look forward to its continued success in our community.”
Operation Splash was developed as part of Kaiser Permanente Southern California’s Healthy Eating, Active Living (HEAL) efforts to reduce obesity in the community by broadening opportunities for access to healthy foods and daily physical activity. The mission of Operation Splash is to support aquatic facilities and swim programs that help increase physical activity in low-income areas, diminish the risk of chronic disease, and build strong bodies. The program encourages all participants to become water-safe in a fun and healthy environment.
"Teaching our children how to swim translates into lives being saved,” added Brian Kingston, President of Friends of Chula Vista Parks and Recreation. "And we want to thank Kaiser Permanente for their continued support and generous funding which allows the children of our community to learn this crucial skill."
Posted: May 13, 2013