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Watch Me Swim (WMS) was founded more than 19 years ago by Kari Bahour after her infant son experienced a “near drowning” incident. Thankfully her son survived without complications. In concern for her son’s safety, Kari researched several swim programs looking for one that would teach “competence” in the water before instilling “confidence”. After her son’s experience, she knew all too well how easy a curious toddler can briefly escape supervision and end up in a dangerous situation. After doing her own research and receiving a recommendation from her neighbor, Kari enrolled her 16 month old son in the ISR infant self-rescue swim program. Amazed at the aquatic problem solving skills her son learned in just a few short weeks, she passionately pursued becoming a survival swimming instructor to provide these essential lifesaving skills to more children.
In 2000, Kari was accepted into the ISR Instructor Training and Development program. To date, she had the privilege and honor of teaching survival swimming skills to thousands of infants and young children. In 2008, she was selected to undergo additional training to become an ISR Master Instructor and train and develop new survival swimming instructors nationwide. In addition to training more than 20 new instructors in Florida, Louisiana, Montana, Tennessee, Mississippi, Illinois, Texas, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania & Delaware, Kari served as a professional mentor and contributed extensively to the overall operation and expansion of Infant Swimming Resource (ISR).
Wanting to give back to her community, in 2014 Kari founded a nonprofit organization called Water Smart Tots, Inc.. Water Smart Tots is a nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating early childhood drowning in the Greater Tampa Bay area. Watch Me Swim, Inc. is a proud sponsor of Water Smart Tots, Inc. To learn more about Water Smart Tots, Inc., please visit www.WaterSmartTots.org.
Kari has been featured and recognized on many media outlets including Fox 13's Whats Right with Tampa Bay in 2016, Bay News 9 Community Hero and WFLA Daytime TV Show. She has also been nominated for several awards including WEDU's Be More Awards. To view more, click here: watersmarttots.org
Kari is an active member of the Hillsborough County Water Safety Team, the National Drowning Prevention Alliance, Safe Kids Greater Tampa Bay and the U.S. Swim School Association just to name a few.