LIVINGSTON, NJ - The West Essex YMCA has announced that because “learning to swim is a critical safety skill for every child” that “they are offering FREE swim lessons to teach children ages three and up through adults water safety and basic swimming skills.”

This program, sponsored by Kenneth and Helen DeGhetto, is designed for those with little or no experience in the water. Open to the community, the Y is offering four 30-minute lessons for free, from Dec 27 through Jan 3. Those interested should print out the form from the photo gallery above and bring it to the YMCA, located at 321 S. Livingston Ave., send an email to sweber@metroymcas.org or call: (973) 992-7500 x108. Space is limited, so register early and by Dec. 23.

In a press release on the program, the West Essex YMCA said, “Drowning is the second leading cause of accidental death for children under fourteen. We believe all children should know how to swim and be safe in and around water at all times.”

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Participants will learn basic swimming skills and practice safety habits, while in and around the water, which will result in a sense of accomplishment and increased self-confidence and security while near the water.

There are a few rules: no make up classes are allowed; participants must come on the days they sign up for; and no members currently in swim lessons may sign up.