Genesis Swim Safety Fund
The Genesis Swim Safety Fund was established after the tragic drowning of 13 year-old Genesis Holmes in Hollywood, SC. It aims to support aquatic safety programs in the Johns Island, Awendaw/McClellanville, and Ravenel/Hollywood areas to reduce the number of drownings in Charleston County.
Key Focus Areas
- Aquatic Safety -The Genesis Swim Safety Fund focuses on drowning prevention in the Lowcountry by raising funds to offer
aquatic programs in rural areas such as Johns Island, Awendaw/McClellanville and Ravenel/Hollywood, SC.
- Portable Pool Program - Contributions help support swim instruction through the use of Charleston County Parks' portable pool, which is used to introduce swimming to hundreds of kids throughout the Lowcountry every summer.
- Swim Instruction Scholarships - The Genesis Swim Safety Fund supports scholarships that give families in need the opportunity to attend Charleston County Parks' swim instruction programming free of charge.
"My son, Genesis, still lives in this community. So many have learned to swim because of the Genesis Swim Safety Fund, and knowing how to swim saves lives!”
- Jennifer Holmes, Mother of Genesis Holmes
"Thanks to the Charleston County Parks Foundation, every member of our community has the opportunity to learn to swim. Swim lessons are fun and can create a love and respect for water. In just a few years, we have seen how the community benefits from having a safe and family-friendly place to swim and recreate.”
- Michael Bradley, Park Manager, Charleston County Park & Recreation Commission
The vision of The Charleston County Parks Foundation is to identify, develop, and sustain projects that actively encourage people to experience the Charleston County Park system's facilities, programs, and services for the benefit of living safer and healthier lifestyles.
The Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission formed the Foundation in 1990 to help generate funding for the continued growth and development of the county park system and to support leisure opportunities for Charleston County residents using non-tax dollars. Sadly, in May of 2014, a 13-year-old named Genesis Holmes drowned in a pond near Hollywood, SC. After learning about the tragic accident, the Foundation, family members and community leaders became determined to prevent this kind of drowning from ever happening again. At that time, the Foundation transitioned into more of a project-based organization focused on specific needs within the local community. One of these projects is named “The Genesis Swim Safety Fund” in honor of Genesis Holmes, with a primary focus to raise money to support swim safety and aquatic programs in the outlying and underserved areas of Charleston like Hollywood. Most of these programs are now occurring at the West County Aquatic Center.
The West County Aquatic Center (WCAC) and the “Genesis Pool” was built in Hollywood with a mission and vision to save lives. In 2017, the Town of Hollywood officially signed a memorandum of agreement solidifying a partnership between the town and Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission. The amenities at WCAC include lifeguards, competitive swim lanes, a zero-depth entry area, restrooms, showers, changing areas, lounge chairs, and aquatic safety and fitness programs. Hollywood is also the community where Genesis Holmes and his family are from. Jennifer Holmes, Genesis' mother continues to serve on the Genesis Swim Safety Committee. Since the passing of Genesis, she has learned to swim and trained to be a certified lifeguard at WCAC. The entire community continues to conquer their fear of water now that they have access to a community pool and free swim lessons. The Genesis Project provides children and families with the skill to swim that will develop into a lifelong love for water that impact future generations.