Sun safety is very important as skin cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States, with one million new cases diagnosed each year. It's widely known that protection from the sun's rays could prevent about 90% of all skin cancer cases. Youth are the most at risk for overexposure to ultraviolet radiation (UV rays) because they spend the most time outdoors in the sun. It is estimated that most people receive 80% of lifetime UV exposure before the age of 18!
The POOL COOL program was designed to teach sun safety to kids during swim lessons in hope of forming good sun protection habits at a young age. Specifically, the program explains the dangers of overexposure to the sun and encourages the kids to develop healthy habits for a lifetime. The POOL COOL program consists of:
- 8 simple lessons (5 minutes long) taught at the beginning of regular swimming lessons
- some ideas for sun-safe Poolside Activities if time permits
- additional resources for enhancing the pool environment
Pool Cool has proven a success! Swimming pools with POOL COOL's Sun Safety program had more protected pool environments, more parents and children with improved sun protection habits and a reduction in sunburn among lifeguards participating in the program. Don't let your pool folks be left in the sun!
With very little effort and cost, you can bring Pool Cool to your community pool. Just click on the Pool Cool materials tab and start downloading!
Funding and Collaborators
The Pool Cool Sun-Safety Program is based at the University of Pennsylvania. It was coordinated by the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University and the Cancer Research Center of Hawai'i in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association (www.nrpa.org). It is funded by a grant from the National Cancer Institute (www.nci.nih.gov) Grant CA 92505.