ABOUT CONNOR CARES FOUNDATION
The Connor Cares Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization which was founded in 2007 after the death of five-year-old Connor Freed, who drowned underneath an empty lifeguard chair in five feet of water at a country club pool. A patron of the pool spotted Connor's lifeless body and pulled him out of the water. Another patron began performing CPR as he threw up water. Once 911 were called, they questioned, "Is there a defibrillator there?" The response: "Yes. But we are not allowed to use it." Since 2006, laws have changed and the Red Cross now requires lifeguards to be trained on the use of AED’s. “Connor’s Law” was passed on April 9th, 2013, which requires all public pools to have AED’s on site as well as trained personnel present. Maryland and the Connor Cares Foundation will lead the nation in the placement of defibrillators at public pools to help prevent needless drownings and other associated tragedies that could be stopped.
In addition to donating defibrillators, the foundation aims to bring about awareness regarding water safety and drowning statistics, and educate the public through campaigns, fundraising, and training. The Connor John-James Freed Scholarship Fund has sponsored over 1000 children in Arlington Echo's Drownproofing Program in Anne Arundel County. The fund provides an assortment of necessities, including bathing suits, towels, goggles and more for children that otherwise could not afford the drownproofing program and associated costs. Connor Cares has raised over $10,000 for the Infant Swimming Resource (ISR) program as well as sponsoring many individual children of all ages for swimming lessons. We have also worked with Baltimore Parks & Rec where we hosted a Water Safety Day with Olympic gold medalist, Cullen Jones and are currently working with the MLB (including the Atlanta Braves and Baltimore Orioles) to promote water safety.
We will continue to actively work toward our primary goal of a safe world where drowning is no longer a leading cause of death and pools are made safer by providing education and encouraging all pools to follow a standard.