Paralympic medalist Jamal Hill to visit San Diego schools to spread disability awareness

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – When Jamal Hill made it onto the Team USA Paralympic swimming roster in 2018, he knew that he wanted to offer the world more than just a view of him wining medals and personal accolades. As he reflected on his own childhood experiences and how few role models he had in the sport that looked like him, he knew that his career had already begun to embody the phrase “Representation matters” for youth around the world, but how could he increase the opportunity for others? Jamal decided the best way to use his expertise, skills, and platform to truly serve others was by teach one million people to swim around the world beginning with his home city of Los Angeles.

He had a dream of a global community where everyone could safely enjoy the experiences and opportunities that would come as a result of knowing how to swim. For two years Jamal Hill and his business partner Wilma Wong conducted extensive research and development training individuals who either self identified or had family members that identified them as aqua-phobic, with the aim of creating a learn to swim curriculum that could effectively and efficiently serve even the most apprehensive of students.

Two years and hundreds of successful cases later, the Swim Up Hill Organization, a social justice driven 501(c)(3) non-profit organization was incorporated April of 2020 to provide specialized swim education that is tailored to the specific needs of low-to-middle income communities which continue to be affected by disproportionately high drowning rates.

Historically this gap in service has primarily attempted to be filled by other organizations through cost reduced swim lessons, but these communities continue to suffer year after year because the problems they face are founded in generational trauma and a consistent lack of access to communal water features. Our organization uniquely fills this gap through aqua-phobic specific trauma healing techniques and a home-based learn to swim curriculum that involves parents in the education process and does not require a pool in order to build basic swimming skills.

Jamal Hill is now visiting San Diego schools to spread awareness about disabilities, and stopped by the KUSI News studios to share what he will be telling the students.

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Categories: Good Morning San Diego