Community pool looking for summer lifeguards

First Cumberland Pool looking for 5-10 new lifeguards to avoid cutting pool hours

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) — The First Cumberland Pool has been a staple of the community here for more than 60 years.

As the dog days of summer approach, the staff is concerned that hours at the pool could be reduced if they can’t find more lifeguards.

The pool has been renovated.

Now, it needs to be supervised.

First Cumberland Presbyterian says due to “aging facilities, declining visitation, and high expenses,” fewer public pools across the nation are opening for the summer.

But the church’s pool will not become another statistic.

It will serve the greater Chattanooga community once again.

“We really felt like it was really important to continue that legacy in the community in offering a place where families can come,” said Church Youth & Community Engagement Director Sarah Quattrochi. “Kids can come just have a good time, spend time together bonding and [learn] the skills of swimming that they can take with them forever.”

While the pool will be open, Quattrochi says it still needs more lifeguards to stay fully operational.

“If they are certified to be lifeguards, we would love to have another five-to-10 certified lifeguards,” Quattrochi said. “Unfortunately, there aren’t many courses for the certification happening at the moment. So we’re really only looking for people who are already certified.”

The church says the “community has a connection” to the pool.

Some local kids start swimming at the pool in pre-school and grow up to later serve as lifeguards and supervise the next generation.

16-year-old Bishop Allen is next in line.

“In order to start the lifeguard process, it’s not that hard,” Allen said. “You just need to be able to swim 300 meters, be able to retrieve a brick from the bottom of the deep end in under 1:30, be able to tread water for two minutes, pass an online course and then you’re good to go. After that, it’s just smooth sailing.”

Summer is only beginning and this community staple is praying that help is on the way.

“I think the pool and the water is a really unifying place,” Quattrochi said. “You don’t know where people come from, what challenges they’re going through. It’s just, a lot of times, a lot of laughter and joy. I think in the world we’re living in today, that is a really important thing to keep going.”

Bishop says the pool staff wants to see the facility stay open as long as it can over the summer.

He says those willing to work morning and afternoon shifts would be most welcome.

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Hamilton County, Local News