OZAWKIE (KSNT) – A local non-profit organization is taking action to spare families from having to experience the tragedy of losing a child to drowning.
The Love, Carissa Corporation focuses on making sure that swim lessons and life jackets are available to everyone regardless of their ability to pay. This is accomplished through donor support and collaboration with local communities so that no parent has to face a disaster similar to what happened to Carissa Jo Babcock, the namesake of the Love, Carissa Corporation.
Babcock was born on May 4, 2006, in Colorado and was nicknamed “Scooter” by her grandparents. At the age of nine, Babcock’s story was cut short when she drowned on August 28, 2015, in Maine while in a river with four adults.
Her death inspired the creation of a group to ensure that the risk of a child drowning is significantly decreased through adult supervision, swimming lessons and life jackets. To help spread awareness, the organization holds Scooter’s Rally on the first Saturday of May as part of National Drowning Awareness Month by hosting a poker run and a charity auction.
This year’s rally will be held at the American Legion Post 225 at 10114 Old Town Trail in Ozawkie. The day will begin with registration opening up for the poker run at 8 a.m. then a Ranger Ceremony at a nearby boat ramp at 3 p.m. The charity auction is set to start at 4 p.m.
Currently, the non-profit maintains nine life jacket loaner stations on Lake Perry and one on Mission Lake. It also helps out other lakes by donating life jackets that it collects. If you want to help out by donating or volunteering with the organization, go to their website here or call 620-875-9200.