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Sussex Family YMCA joins world's largest swim lesson

Brooklyn Blackwell, 6, receives a helping hand from YMCA volunteer Betty Lou Dlabik during the World's Largest Swim Lesson. BY DAN COOK
July 9, 2014

The World's Largest Swim Lesson, an international program, made its stop for the second year June 20 at the Sussex Family YMCA.

Forty countries along with 48 states took to the water at exactly the same moment to comprise the 40,000-participant lesson. The Sussex Family YMCA is one of the two locations in Delaware where the lesson is taught. This year, 51 children took advantage of the free lesson here.

The program was designed five years ago to bring awareness about water safety. May was water safety month, but the lesson is held in June because more people drown in June than any other month.

"We couldn't have done the lesson without the volunteers who taught the children," said YMCA Aquatics Director Lydia Schmierer. "It was a great event."

The World's Largest Swim Lesson isn't the only time lessons are taught at the YMCA.

"Sussex Family YMCA swim lessons run by the week in the summer so vacationers and locals alike can take advantage of them," said Schmierer.

"It's a great event that brings a lot of awareness to our community where we are surrounded by water," said Sussex Family YMCA Director Lauri Weeks.

For more information, go to www.worldslargestswimlesson.org.