Non-profit helps children get in the swim

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COLUMBIA - A community based organization that provides tutoring services, dance classes, and other skills to children in Columbia is offering swim lessons this summer.

The Grade A classes are taking place at the Macher aquatic center. Owner Joanne Macher said she loves working with the program.

“My purpose is to help a community in need,” she said.

She has been working with Grade A for about two years. Macher said the cause is very important to her.

“I’m big on water safety,” she said.

Macher said swimming is less about strength and more about technique. She teaches the children lifesaving skills like treading water, floating, and the victory stroke.

The executive director of Grade A, Janice Dawson-Threat, said it isn’t just about the children.

“If your child is struggling in the water and they look to you for comfort, what can you do,” she said. “So we encourage parents to take the lessons as well.”

The children in the Grade A program will continue swim lessons with Macher for the remainder of the summer.