Keep kids safe in pools


Drowning is the number one injury-related cause of death among children between 1 and 4 years old. Swimming pools are the most common site for a drowning to occur for children ages 1 to 4.

Here are six things parents need to know to keep kids safe at the pool.

Watch kids when they are in or around water, without being distracted. Keep young children within arm’s reach of an adult. Make sure older children swim with a partner every time.

Teach children how to swim. Every child is different, so enroll children in swim lessons when they are ready. Consider their age, development and how often they are around water.

Make sure kids know how to swim and learn these five water survival skills:

• Step or jump into water over their head and return to the surface.

• Float or tread water for one minute.

• Turn around in a full circle and find an exit.

• Swim 25 yards to exit the water.

• Exit the water. If in a pool, be able to exit without using the ladder.

Install fences around home pools. A pool fence should surround all sides of the pool and be at least 4 feet tall with self-closing and self-latching gates.

Empty kids’ pools after each use. Store them upside down so they do not collect water.

Know what to do in an emergency. Learning CPR and basic water rescue skills may help you save a child’s life.

Safe Kids Jackson County is working to teach and remind families in our community about water safety. For more information about water safety visit or call Anna Lippard at 587-8225.




The Big Latch On is Saturday


The first week in August every year celebrates World Breastfeeding Week, a global initiative to promote, protect and support breastfeeding worldwide. In Western North Carolina, a collaborative celebration takes place annually during this time to represent a global event called The Big Latch On. This event brings families together and submits a synchronized count of breastfeeding mothers’ “latches” to the global total.

The Big Latch On, the sixth annual in our area, will be held at Bridge Park in Sylva on Saturday and is hosted by a collaborative regional partnership of breastfeeding support from Jackson, Haywood, Macon and Swain counties.

The event is destined to be the biggest and best yet, hosting representatives from community physicians and health organizations. Other activities include face-painting, car seat checks, baby wearing/carrier help, bubble fun, fairy hair, breastfeeding photography, cloth diapering information and more. Free food, drinks and music will also be at the event.

Moms will be eligible for hundreds of dollars in door prizes. This event is family friendly and encourages the support of the entire community for breastfeeding moms.

Because breastfeeding looks different for everyone, moms who are exclusively pumping and offering their milk via bottles, moms feeding donor milk, moms using nipple shields or supplemental nursing systems or even moms feeding formula via supplemental nursing systems are encouraged to participate.

Registration opens at 9 a.m. and the event runs until noon. For more information, call Brandi Nations at 587-8214 or 586-7907.