The Swim For Life Foundation recognized a need for one consistent water safety message and began by asking: Where is the risk?
The Safer 3 is a comprehensive initiative to dramatically reduce drowning incidents by:
1) Recognizing risks associated with water related activities
2) Implementing strategies to reduce and manage those risks
3) Responsibly maintaining those strategies
The main concept of the Safer 3 is based on the definition of the word “Safe”. Safe means you are free from risk of harm or danger. When it comes to water, that simply isn’t true. There is always risk when you are in, on or around the water. The risk may vary in degree from very slight to very severe.
The letter “r” in the word “Safer” reflects that difference. Risk of drowning is found in 3 main areas; Water, a Person which we shall refer to as a KID, since we are all someone’s kid, and a Response that will become the last chance for saving a life.
I've incorporated the Safer 3 model into several of our presentations. In the past we stressed "3-E's" Education, Engineering and Emergency Response. In an effort to deliver a consistent massage Education becomes Safer Kids (and adults), Engineering becomes Safer Water and Emergency Response just becomes Safer Response. Great minds thinking alike.
By adapting our materials will are able to use the Safer 3 materials and create a consistent message. I love using the Safer 3 characters in our presentations; they give a visual reminder the kids really remember. The media will also like it because they can use the visuals and it makes for a clear, concise sound bite. I'm already practicing: "To reduce the tragic effects of drowning we all need to practice the Safer 3- Safer Water, Safer Kids and Safer Response."
All of our advocacy fits into one of these categories. Swim lessons, rip current awareness, lifejackets all fall into SAFER KIDS. Fencing, drain covers, pool alarms are all SAFER WATER. Lifeguards, rescue equipment and CPR training are all SAFER RESPONSE.
I’m thrilled to be collaborating with so many great groups! Our combined impact is so much more effective than our individual effect. As we move into our drowning season let’s all work together to make this the safest year ever.
Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project