More than 400 "Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim" Books to be Distributed in Connecticut

NORWALK, Conn., May 26, 2011 - Stew Leonard III Children's Charities has partnered with the Connecticut Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (CTAAP) to distribute more than 400 Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim books to pediatricians in an effort to spread the water safety message throughout the state of Connecticut. The books will be distributed throughout the month of May, which is Water Safety Awareness Month.

The new partnership will send, free of cost, a copy of Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim to pediatricians' offices in and around Norwalk, Danbury and Newington, the three towns in the state of Connecticut with Stew Leonard's grocery store locations. The aim of the program is educate parents about importance of water safety as well as to bring a family's most trusted expert - their child's pediatrician - into the conversation about drowning and what can be done to prevent it.

"Drowning is the number one cause of accidental death for children 1-4 years of age, but it is preventable," said Stew Leonard Jr. "With the CTAAP's support, we can reach children in our local community and help save lives."

"We are very pleased to be working with the folks from Stew Leonard III Children's Charities on this worthwhile project. With such a sweet story of Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim, we may be able to save a child's life by encouraging better decisions. Pediatrician's life work is about child safety. In that regard, we hope everyone reads this book to their child, and teaches water safety to them," said CTAAP President Ronald Angoff, MD, FAAP.

Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim was written by Stew and Kim Leonard, who founded Stew Leonard III Children's Charities after they lost their 2 year old son in a drowning accident in 1989. Written for children ages two through six, the book is a child's first guide to water safety and conveys an important message of how to be safe near the water through the story of Stewie, a duck who wants to swim with the 'big ducks,' but is prevented from going in the water by his older sisters until he learns the water safety rules. Over the past two decades, the Stew Leonard III Children's Charities has been nationally recognized for its drowning prevention efforts and increasing education and awareness about children's water safety. The foundation has helped to raise millions of dollars to support water safety awareness and education, including swimming scholarships, lifeguard training, and water safety equipment.

Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim is available for sale at all Stew Leonard's grocery locations as well as online at

About Stew Leonard III Children's Charities
On January 1, 1989, a 21-month old toddler lost his life in a drowning accident. This sparked his parents to pledge that they would do everything in their power to prevent this tragedy from striking other families, since drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in children under five. In 1990, that toddler's parents, Kim and Stew Leonard, founded the Stew Leonard III Water Safety Foundation in memory of their son. Since this time, the Foundation has raised more than $1 million dollars to go towards water safety awareness and education, including providing swim scholarships and lifeguard training, along with writing and publishing two children's books on water safety: Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim and Swimming Lessons with Stewie the Duck. A Spanish version, El Patito Stewie Aprende Nadar, is also available. For more information, please visit

About The American Academy of Pediatrics
The American Academy of Pediatrics is a national organization of over 50,000 pediatricians dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents, and young adults. The Connecticut chapter of the AAP strives to promote the good health of children via its working committees, lobbying efforts, and the dissemination of information to families and those who care for children.

Media Contact:
Meghan Bell
Stew Leonard's 203.750.6107

Jillian G. Wood
CTAAP 860.525.9738
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