20 young swimmers from the local Omaha Boys & Girls Clubs had the opportunity to eat breakfast with a champion on Monday morning.
Athletes under the age of 12 who participate in the Michael Phelps Foundation’s ‘im’ program met with the 14-time Olympic Gold Medalist at the downtown Omaha Hilton.
Phelps spoke to the youngsters about how his first visit to the pool when he was seven years old.
“My mom put us in the water for water safety and here I am,” Phelps said. “I fell in love with it and I started having some goals, some dreams. I wanted to become an Olympian.“
In a few weeks, Phelps will be competing in eight events in the 2012 Olympics in London.
The Michael Phelps Foundation developed ‘im’ in 2009, creating one of the first water-safety courses to offer accessible and affordable world-class instruction to children across the country.
Today the program is in 28 Boys & Girls Clubs nationwide. The program is designed to encourage healthy and active lifestyles for participants by offering water-safety courses, recreational pool activities, swim training as well as health and wellness education.