There are more than 18 million swimming pools and hot tubs in the United States, but more than one-third of adults in the United States can't swim the length of a pool, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. About 10 people drown every day, and the majority of them are adults. 

The CDC identifies a variety of factors that can influence drowning risk, including the inability to swim. Research also shows that the children of adults who don't know how to swim are at a greater risk of not learning to swim, which increases their chances of drowning.

The USMS Swimming Saves Lives Foundation works hard to reduce these risks by serving as a financial and educational resource for programs nationwide that provide adult learn-to-swim lessons. Since 2012, SSLF has awarded more than $550,000 in grants to adult learn-to-swim providers and programs.

Thousands of adults across the country have benefitted from lessons taught by our program partners, thanks to generous contributions from USMS members and other supporters. USMS also accepts planned giving and bequests. Please read our gift acceptance policy.

If you'd like to discuss opportunities to contribute to the USMS Swimming Saves Lives Foundation, please contact Holly Neumann, Manager, Adult Learn-to-Swim and Foundation Programs, at 941-556-6285 or via email.

Find a USMS Swimming Saves Lives Foundation Program

Find an SSLF Grant Program 

Donor Recognition Levels

  • Life Saver - $60:
    Teach one adult to learn to swim
  • Winning Relay - $240:
    Teach four adults to learn to swim
  • Extra Mile - $1,650:
    Help support an SSLF grant program
  • Champion Club - $2,500:
    Launch an adult learn-to-swim program

Your donation of any amount to the USMS Swimming Saves Lives Foundation makes a difference. Thank you.

How to Apply for a Grant

Want to apply for an SSLF grant? The application window is open from May through July, and you can apply here. If you have questions about the application or grant process or would like to be alerted when the application window opens, please email us. Here are tips for submitting a strong application.

U.S. Masters Swimming is registered as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Contributions to the USMS Swimming Saves Lives Foundation are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law. U.S. Masters Swimming’s tax identification number is 31-0999051. You can find out more about us on under United States Masters Swimming, Inc. A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE WITHIN THE STATE. 1- 800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) OR REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE." FLORIDA REGISTRATION CH33301