On January 1, 1989, a 21-month old toddler lost his life in a drowning accident. This sparked his parents to pledge that they would do everything in their power to prevent this tragedy from striking other families, since drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in children under five. In 1990, that toddler’s parents, Kim and Stew Leonard, founded the Stew Leonard III Water Safety Foundation in memory of their son.
Since this time, the Foundation has raised more than $2 million dollars to go towards water safety awareness and education, including lifeguard training and providing 10,000 free or low-cost swimming lessons to children every year.
How We Help
Annually, we sponsor Stewie the Duck who visits preschools in Collier County with his message to “Never Swim Alone.” Stewie reaches over 16,000 preschool children per year.