May is Water Safety Month, and now, more than ever, our work to keep people safer in, near, and around water is so important. During this difficult time, we at the American Red Cross want to keep you informed about a number of resources and programs that you can use to serve as a voice of safety for our communities as this unique summer season approaches—whether online, at home, or out in the community.

Provisional certifications amid COVID-19

The American Red Cross COVID-19 Guidance webpage serves as a clearinghouse for all Red Cross Training Services interim guidance, options, and resources. Updated several times a week, the page centralizes information about provisional certification courses, certification extensions, free and discounted online courses, toolkits, and other resources in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Many NIRSA members are reaching out to their local Red Cross representatives about provisional certifications for staff. For those looking for certifications now, the Red Cross has created two new provisional certification programs. Check out that link to learn more, and complete the embedded form if you’d like someone from the Red Cross to reach out to you directly.

Learning center resources for facilities

NIRSA members involved with aquatics facility management may find the following resources from our guidance page particularly useful as they prepare for reopening their facilities and engaging their aquatic safety teams:

Water safety resources for NIRSA family members of all ages

Whether you’re lifeguarding student swimmers on your campus or your own children in the bathtub, water safety is essential. These online resources provide great safety information that is easily accessible for children and adults:

Encourage your staff and student employees to get drowning prevention and emergency response information at their fingertips: The free Red Cross Swim mobile app can be downloaded by texting “SWIM” to 90999.

For more information

Please reach out to your local Red Cross representative with questions or for more information about the many resources available on our COVID-19 guidance page. If you need to stock up on first aid supplies or emergency preparedness kits, remember NIRSA members receive a 10% discount on eligible retail products purchased through our store. We hope you’ll stay connected with us: Hear about the latest from the Red Cross by exploring our blog and following us on social media.

National Director of Training Services at American Red Cross | NIRSA Profile

Catherine Barry is currently the National Director of Training Services at the American Red Cross.