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Kids Don't Float

Alaska's award-winning Kids Don't Float Program has become a model for educators and injury prevention specialists throughout the U.S. For more information about how to start a program in your area or to request a presentation contact our office.


Kids Donít Float 100,000 Participants celebration - Kids Don't Float Fashion Show

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Kid's Corner

Kids Don't Float Program

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About Kids Don't Float

Kids Don't Float (KDF) is a statewide injury prevention program that was developed to address Alaska's high child and youth drowning rate. In a collaborative effort between several state and federal agencies, organizations and local grass-roots sponsors, Kids Don't Float now includes a life jacket loaner board component and an educational component.


History

Kids Don't Float began in Homer, Alaska, in early 1996. The Homer Fire Department, with a grant from the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, collaborated with Homer Safe Kids, the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, and the Homer School District to establish 15 life jacket loaner stations in communities around Kachemak Bay. The stations, or "loaner boards," display life jackets that can be borrowed at no cost and returned after use. The public response was so positive that, in November of the same year, the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services Section of Community Health and EMS, the U.S. Coast Guard District 17 Recreational Boating Safety Program, and Alaska Safe Kids partnered on an expansion. In 2000, the newly established State Office of Boating Safety joined the partnership.

Donate your old life jackets

Donate life jackets to Kids Don't Float at any of our designated donation centers.

Kids Don't Float Loaner Board


-   In the last 10 years, 105 more Alaskans died in recreational boating accidents than died in commercial fishing.   -  9 of 10 of those who died were adult males   -  5 of 6 experience a capsize or fall overboard into Alaska's cold water   -  3 of 4 involve powerboats   -  Half are in salt water, half in fresh water   -  9 of 10 involve boats under 26 feet in length  - 5 of 6 fatalities are swamping, capsizing and falling overboard