Low Cost Teen Life Jackets Available; February 2012; NMBA funds create affordable way to keep teens safe on the water
Low Cost Teen Life Jackets Available for Camps, Schools, Non-Profit Programs: NMBA donation to BoatUS Foundation helps launch program
Chicago, IL: February 27, 2012:
Made possible through a donation from the National Marine Bankers Association, the goal of the program is to provide an affordable way to keep teens safe while they participate in educational programs on local waters. Groups interested in getting life jackets may apply using an online application located at www.BoatUS.com/Foundation/TeensAfloat by a March 31 deadline. After applications are received, the Foundation will choose the applications that best match grant guidelines and post them on the Foundation’s website and Facebook page for a public vote in April.
“We’ve received many requests over the years from groups providing these kinds of on-the-water educational programs to teens that desperately need life jackets,” said BoatUS Foundation Program Manager Alanna Keating. “These programs are great ways to give teens a chance to experience being on the water and at the same time educate them on the importance of life jacket wear. We also hope that involving the public with voting helps to promote these programs,” she added.
The Teens Afloat program is for groups currently offering on-the-water programs, such as educational boat trips, canoe and kayak excursions that include safe and clean boating in their curriculum. However, groups that don’t currently include safe and clean boating in their educational programs can also apply if they commit to add these topics to their programming. “Our ultimate goal is see these kinds of educational programs grow – and keep teens safe while they’re participating in them,” added Keating.
The life jackets offered are Type III vests – the most comfortable non-inflating type available that normally retail for about $30 each. Applicants are allowed to request from 10 to 50 life jackets in increments of 10. For more information in including application guidelines, go to www.BoatUS.com/Foundation/TeensAfloat.
“The NMBA supports BoatUS Foundation’s commitment to promote stewardship of American’s waterways and make boating safe and enjoyable,” commented Mike Smith representing the NMBA board of directors as he presented the $5,000 check to Foundation President Chris Edmonston at the association’s annual members’ conference in November 2011. “The company controls overhead, with 85% of the expenses being used for the programs.” Smith highlighted several initiatives that made Boat U.S. Foundation a clear choice for this donation, including the Child Life Jacket Loaner Program which is now established in all 50 states with over 500 active sites, the EPIRB rental program which has saved 63 lives to date, and the more than $1 million awarded through the Grassroots Grants programs since 1997. This was the 2nd time in as many years the NMBA recognized the BoatUS Foundation with a contribution in this amount.
The NMBA board encourages you to share this with any local non-profit organization that may fit the parameters of the program so they may have the opportunity to purchase the life jackets for their on-the-water educational programs. Don’t forget to check out the applicants on the Foundation’s website and Facebook page in April and vote for your favorite groups.
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About National Marine Bankers Association:
Membership in the NMBA includes financial institutions such as commercial banks, private financing firms, savings and loan companies, and credit unions. Associate members are those which provide services to the marine lending community. Members extend or originate credit to consumers, retailers/dealers and manufacturers of recreational boats and equipment. For details, visit www.marinebankers.org or call 312/946-6260.