The ZAC Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to improving water safety by funding advocacy, education and effective programming that works to safeguard children and their families, today announced its full schedule of 2019 water safety camps nationwide. At 17 clubs in 13 states, the ZAC Foundation will partner with local organizations, including Boys & Girls Clubs, American Red Cross, YMCAs and first responders, to host a four-day water safety camp for children ages 5-9.

The camp teaches children valuable information to keep them safe in any body of water by sharing lessons using three primary educational stations – classroom activities, in-water swimming instruction, and First Responder interaction. Each station reinforces four essential safety lessons called the ABC and Ds of water safety – Adult supervision, Barriers around water, water safety Classes, and Drain safety.

Founded in 2008, The ZAC Foundation was established by Karen and Brian Cohn after the loss of their six-year-old son, Zachary Archer Cohn, who became trapped in a drain in their backyard swimming pool. A major part of the Foundation’s work is its ZAC Camps, which have drawn more than 15,000 kids in recent years.

“These water safety camps embody Zachary’s legacy and teach children invaluable water safety skills,” said ZAC Foundation co-founder Karen Cohn. “We see so many children start the week afraid of swimming but by the end of the camp they are comfortable in the water, blowing bubbles and floating on their backs.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control, drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death among children aged 1-4, and the second leading cause among those aged 5-14. Drowning risk is highest in minority populations, with drowning rates nearly three times that of non-minority children. Many of these tragic deaths are preventable through proper water safety skills and measures.

In addition to the in-pool lessons and safety classes with First Responders, ZAC Camp participants will learn the fundamental tenets of water safety from a classroom curriculum based on The Polar Bear Who Couldn’t, Wouldn’t Swim, a children’s book co-authored by Zachary’s parents.

For more information about The ZAC Foundation and ZAC Camps, please visit

The ZAC Foundation 2019 Water Safety Camp Schedule

  • March 18-21 – Green Bay, WI (Boys & Girls Club of Green Bay)
  • April 15-18 – Mobile, AL (Boys & Girls Club of South Alabama)
  • April 15-18 – Greenwich, CT (Boys & Girls Club of Greenwich)
  • June 4-7 – Fullerton, CA (Boys & Girls Club of Fullerton)
  • June 10-13 – Phoenix, AZ (Boys & Girls Club Metropolitan Phoenix)
  • June 11-14 – Albany, GA (Boys & Girls Clubs of Albany)
  • June 11-14 – Eatonville, FL (Boys & Girls Club of Central Florida)
  • June 17-20 – Houston, TX (Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club of Metropolitan Houston)
  • June 24-27 – Chicago, IL (Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago)
  • June 24-27 – San Francisco, CA (Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco)
  • July 8-11 – St. Louis, MO (Boys & Girls Club Greater St. Louis)
  • July 16-19 – Corpus Christi, TX (Boys & Girls Club of the Coastal Bend)
  • July 23-26 – Los Angeles, CA (Variety Boys & Girls Clubs)
  • July 29 – August 1 – Stamford, CT (Boys & Girls Club Stamford)
  • July 30 – August 2 – Andrews AFB, MD (Andrews Air Force Base)
  • August 5-8 – Paterson, NJ (Boys & Girls Club Paterson & Passaic)
  • Aug. 12-15 – Camden, NJ (Boys & Girls Club of Camden County)