Glenwood Springs announced as recipient for Colorado Lifeguard Training Initiative

Glenwood Springs Community Center Lifeguard Makaylah Smith patrols the pool on June 6.
Taylor Cramer/Post Independent

The city of Glenwood Springs has been selected as one of 45 awardees as part of Colorado’s Lifeguard Training Initiative, Gov. Jared Polis announced on June 1.

A grant made possible through partnership with the Department of Local Affairs and the Department of Labor and Employment, $258,000 was made available for towns and cities throughout Colorado looking to enhance lifeguard training. With a maximum asking price of $20,000 for towns interested in the grant, Glenwood Springs will be granted $1,000 as part of the initiative.

“We are making a splash with this exciting support for lifeguards, part of our ongoing work to make sure that pools can safely open earlier, expand hour and stay open longer this summer,” Polis said in a news release. “We are thrilled that so many local governments across the state applied for this funding, so that families, friends and neighbors can dive right into the summer.”

Part of the Polis administration’s continued efforts to ensure the proper training of lifeguards in public pools throughout the state, Glenwood Springs Public Information Officer Bryana Starbuck said the grant will specifically go toward lifeguard certification and recertification and the costs associated in doing so, which will include fees associated in doing such and training supplies.

While Glenwood Springs will have the opportunity to benefit from the training initiative, other towns in Garfield County will not.

Following an $8 million renovation to Rifle Metro Pool, which debuted in the summer of 2020, Rifle Aquatics Supervisor Jessica Wilson said the grant is something she hopes the city will look to consider in future years.

“We see so many kids come and go at this pool, and it makes it difficult to have to constantly train so many newcomers,” she said. “I think this is definitely an initiative that we would be able to benefit from in the future, and I hope that is something that we look to pursue in the future.”

While the majority of the initiative’s money will go toward towns and counties within the Front Range, other mountain areas benefiting from the grant will include Breckenridge, Fruita and more.

While funds will not be made immediately available, Glenwood Springs is expected to collect the grant later this summer.

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