Miracle Swimming for Adults Inc
2750 Bahia Vista Street
Suite #105

Our mission is to teach all adults to swim; that is, to be reliable for their safety in deep water by 2106, globally.

CEO/Executive Director Ms. Melon Dash
Board Chair Ms. Terri A. Goodman
Board Chair Affiliation myChoice Health Plan
General Info
Organization DBA
Miracle Swimming
Miracle Swimming for Adults
Miracle Swimming Adult Lessons
5 Circles Teaching Method
Miracle Swimming Institute
Former Names
21st Century Swimming Lessons Inc
Miracle Swimming Institute, LLC
Transpersonal Swimming Institute, LLC
Transpersonal Swimming Institute
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Incorporation Year 2010
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes Jan 2018
State Registration Yes May 2017
Financial Summary
IRS Letter of Determination
IRS Letter of DeterminationView
Other Documents
Florida Department of State Name ChangeView
History of MSAView
Policy Against Commission for Fundraising ConsultantView
FL. Dept. of Health Bureau of Water Safety LetterView
Impact Statement
Taught approximately 175 adults in our Beginning classes, worldwide; taught freestyle to 16 adults, ocean safety to approximately 8. Scholarshipped 40 children in partnership with Salvation Army for learn-to-swim classes to underserved community members, kids and parents, Spanish-speaking adults.  Scholarshipped 5 adults with the help of the Community Foundation of Sarasota County. Scholarshipped the training of one Spanish-speaking instructor to outreach to Hispanic community.
Trained 3 new instructors nationwide;
Leased a pool: Miracle Swimming for Adults Pool: the world's first pool dedicated to teaching afraid adults to swim.
Raised $89K with Kickstarter campaign to renovate pool and buy pool covers.
"Everybody In The Pool!" Event to notify every Sarasota County resident of Miracle Swimming messaging and offerings;
Began teaching local adults at a 62% discount over regular classes;
Top goals 2017:
Build board
Establish new management of day to day operations
Continue to be self-sustaining with earned income
Build local offerings with increased outreach to both privileged and underserved populations
Train new local instructors
Needs Statement

  1.  $65K Operations, including pool management
  2. Programming scholarships: $48,000 to teach 16 underserved adults to swim. Follow through to impact water safety for their families
  3. Capital improvements: $29,000 ($6.7K structural engineering work on deck, $3.8K shade cover, $10.5K lightning detector--allows us to remain in the pool when far away thunder is heard instead of canceling class almost every summer afternoon, 7K portable ADA compliant handicapped lift
  4. $10K Volunteer development
Background Statement
The swimming lessons system in the U.S. which was created 100 years ago in 1914 was a huge success compared to no swimming lessons programs at all. Drownings were cut in half within 33 years. But as with most new systems, there were bugs that needed to be worked out. In the 1980s, two instructors in the U.S. publicly noticed that the system did not work for adults who are afraid in water. Miracle Swimming for Adults Founder Melon Dash was one. The original system was based on teaching children. No one verified that lessons for kids were suitable for adults. In actuality, it is damaging for afraid adults. It does not teach adults to be safe in deep water. Adult students think their failure is their fault. The vast majority of swimming instructors and all 6 of the other national learn-to-swim agencies are still teaching the old system. Today, many afraid adults who yearn to know how to swim take traditional swimming lessons, become discouraged and quit. After repeating this 3-4 times, they finally resign themselves to not swimming in their lifetimes. They are unsafe in and around water.  Miracle Swimming is a new paradigm that should replace the traditional system used for afraid adults. It works infallibly where all else fails.   Our system is based on universal principles of learning that have not previously been identified as far as we have determined in our 34 years. See 5CirclesTeachingMethod.com.  At Miracle Swimming, learning to swim comes first; learning strokes follows...if desired. The result of Miracle Swimming is safety, comfort, confidence in water, shallow and deep. When people are comfortable in deep water, they can swim.
The U.S. system which was comparatively successful in the early 1900's was copied by many other countries. Now those countries are teaching the system that does not work for afraid-in-water adults. Students have come to us from 50 states and 16 countries to learn to swim.
Areas Served
Areas Served
FL- Charlotte
FL- DeSoto
FL- Hardee
FL- Hillsborough
FL- Lee
FL- Manatee
FL- Sarasota
Areas Served Comments
Our non-profit activities are based in Sarasota, FL with teaching underprivileged adults and kids who are afraid in water to swim. found a pool adopted a pool as our own in 2016. We continue to find new populations to teach in Sarasota: underserved adults, veterans, first responders, 2gen (two generation) non-swimming families.
 Our work is national and international due to the call we've received and the opportunities to serve in many locations. 
Service Categories
Primary Org Type Public & Societal Benefit
Secondary Org Type Public Safety, Disaster Preparedness and Relief
Tertiary Org Type Recreation & Sports
Statement from the Board Chair/Board President

Miracle Swimming continues to grow and evolve as a community leader in the swimming arena. This is most evident by:

1.     More students being enrolled in classes, with a satisfaction rate of over 99%.

2.     An enhanced Instructor Training Program, resulting in more Instructors being trained and teaching within the community.

3.     The opening of the first pool dedicated to teaching Adults to learn to swim,

4.     Offering more pool time and lessons to a number of community organizations such as Girls, Inc., The Salvation Army.

As with any growing organization, Miracle Swimming has been challenged by having enough “hands-on-deck,” and resources to meet the diverse needs of the organization. Some of these needs include:

1.     Identifying the skills and character traits needed for new positions/team members.

2.     Increasing both the number, and level of functioning of the Board of Directors.

3.     Identifying and recruiting key team members that can support and lead key initiatives.

5.     Generating enough revenue and/or donations to support the build-out of offices next to the new pool for key personnel. In addition, having the financial means to purchase critical pool equipment.


Additionally, 2 new board members joined the board in February, 2017. These new Members bring new connections, experience and expertise to the Board; and will be able to provide increased support and direction to the CEO. Key Vendor Partners have been hired to support the pool operations and other necessary initiatives.

I volunteer my time to Miracle Swimming because of my love of the water and all of its benefits to the mind, body and spirit. The water should be a place of peace and joy to all. It can be a place to heal, become physically fit, train, connect with oneself, nature, or others. What the water can give to a person is immeasurable. But none of this is possible unless a person is comfortable in the water.


Miracle Swimming fills a crucial niche in the world of swimming. Simply put, it is a system of teaching comfort that never fails! I have spent my career in Healthcare –working toward effective prevention of disease and chronic conditions. I have seen much healing over the years; but nothing as effective as Miracle Swimming. A 99% success rate is as good as it gets! Every person who wants to learn to be comfortable in water and experience the joy and fun of the water world should have the opportunity to take Miracle Swimming Classes! I am committed to supporting Miracle Swimming, so that its simple system (something often referred to by students as a “Miracle” or “Magic”) is accessible to all desiring it!


Statement from the CEO/Executive Director

The innovations we have brought to Aquatics merit scrutiny by the full industry for the sake of Public Safety worldwide. Our “new” agenda (since 1983) is a game-changer for our two clienteles: adults who afraid in water and swimming instructors. The new question that should be asked in aquatics classes of all levels is: “Are your graduates safe in deep water?” And, because even good swimmers drown, “Do they know how to prevent panic?” If teaching “success” does not include these two skills, we believe swimming (and SCUBA diving) courses must be augmented.  The power and advantages of our system become plain when instructors observe it for 4-5 days.

We have developed a new tag line: Learn to Swim without Learning Strokes. 
This is perfect to describe us, set us apart, and make people ask questions.
  • In order to learn to swim or learn strokes, a person must be in control;
  • Learning to swim and learning strokes are two separate things;
  • Comfort in deep water equals knowing how to swim.
  • All swimmers, not just those who are afraid, need to know Panic Prevention.
  • Afraid students need a class of their own;
  • Afraid adults must be taught differently than children;
  • Panic is the main cause of drowning in adults (in non-alcohol related drownings).
  • Learning to swim begins on land with messages in our culture;
  • Learning strokes is unrelated to safety;
  • You can't learn what to do with your arms, legs, and breath if you're afraid you might die;
  • If you can do freestyle but you can't rest in deep water, it's not accurate to say you can swim yet;
  • Floating does not have to be horizontal;
  • Parents should learn to swim before their children;
  • Panic Prevention must be part of swimming lessons;
  • Fun should be top priority in learning to swim.
  • There must be one common definition of, “I can swim.”
  • Strokes are advanced techniques of swimming that add efficiency but not safety.
  • Swim Instructors must be qualified to teach comfort, confidence, and Panic Prevention. They are not qualified to teach afraid adults or any student until they can.
“Swim instructors” who teach strokes in order to teach efficient swimming but who cannot teach comfort, confidence, and Panic Prevention may be called Stroke Instructors, but not Swim Instructors.

Overcome fear of water, shallow and deep. Learn to be one with the water, responsible for your safety, and prevent panic; learn how the water works; how to be in control in the deep; to move  comfortably and without effort; to regain control if you begin to lose it; to maneuver at will. This is accomplished in two courses. Each course is 24 hours long: 8 sessions of three hours: one hour on land followed by 2 hours in (usually) warm water. It takes an adult 48-72 hours of our classes to overcome their lifelong fear and learn to swim, usually.  

*Budget: $3500/class in Sarasota (more in locations where we travel). Yearly in Sarasota: $38,500
Budget $38,500
Category Public, Society Benefit, General/Other Consumer Protection
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Families Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)
Short Term Success
  • Personal empowerment.
  • Saving lives: individual and family
  • Healing fear: gives people a new way to recreate, exercise, and spend time with families.
  • A universal system for healing fear.
  • Panic Prevention applicable to any panic.
  • A paradigm shift to make schools and teaching work better.


Long Term Success
  • Personal Empowerment.
  • Water Safety.
  • End of Drowning Worldwide.
  • This class guides students to understand what was missing from swimming lessons previously; and that failing to learn was not their fault (we place no blame). It teaches people how the water works and how to swim, despite previous failed attempts. It demonstrates that something they thought might be impossible, which they refused to believe was beyond reach which they pursued relentlessly was, in fact, achievable. This empowers. The program makes people safe in water, in boats, and around water, who would not have been safe otherwise. It saves lives. It informs people about swimming so that they pass on correct messages about learning to swim to family and friends. Parents who learn to swim are more successul getting their children to learn to swim because these parents teach and model encouraging, correct information.
  •  Drowning can be virtually ended not only in the U.S. but worldwide (where it is considered an epidemic) if this program is put into place. It is the only system we've heard of in 32 years (worldwide) that works for afraid adults, which, as mentioned, is half of adults in the U.S. but is likely higher in many other countries.
  • When adults can swim, more public pools will remain open instead of shutting down which has been happening at an alarming rate in the past 5 years. 
  • If more adults could use swimming as a form of exercise, it would give them a non-weightbearing activity they could use to stay fit for the rest of their lives. This has bearing on health care costs and longevity.
Program Success Monitoring
We know it works by their smiles. We know by the feedback forms from every student we teach and that every one of our licensed instructors teaches.
We know by the videos and photos of them swimming freely in deep water. 
We know by the classes they return to take: Ocean 101, 202, Snorkeling and SCUBA diving, then SCUBA vacations with us.
We know by their donations.
Program Success Examples
Dori lives in Ohio and has been terrified in water all her life. She hadn't put her face in the shower, her whole life. She found Miracle Swimming online last year. She was willing to come to Sarasota to learn in February. She took the class with her 4 classmates. She was more than astonished every day at her progress. She and her husband were beside themselves in disbelief, but on the other hand, they could see that the incremental progress she made was so simple and predictable and easy to understand that it was no surprise that she had such a great experience. Everyone around her did, too. Dori went home and she joined her local Y. She applied what she learned, even though she didn't have a teacher or spotter to help her. She used the principles she learned and became confident in deep water by herself. She now swims a mile in a pool that's shallow and deep, 3 times per week. She is absolutely dazzled with herself, as is her husband. Now they can swim together. She says (February, 2014)
"Yes, I'm swimming a mile now....can you believe it???  I'm thrilled; what a great feeling (and all the credit goes to my swim coach who continues to encourage me!).😊

"I'm thrilled to spread the word about your training technique.  As a matter of fact, I spread the word every chance I get!  From the pharmacy, to the grocery store, at the pool.....anyone who will listen.   I'm out drumming up business for the ONLY adult training that actually works....and I'm proud to say I'm living proof!"

101: Safety and confidence in the ocean

202: Learn to body surf, snorkel, sea kayak and stand-up paddle

Ocean 101 transfers the skill of remaining in control in deep water from pool to open water. It teaches the self-confidence and freedom of knowing it doesn't matter that in open water there are no "sides" and the bottom is uncertain. It teaches a way to keep oneself safe even when you can't see through the water and don't know what's in it with you. It teaches the ability to feel at ease with water that moves, what to do in currents, how waves behave, how to avoid rip currents and what to do if caught in one.
Ocean 101: 1700
Ocean 202: 1890

Budget $1,700
Category Public, Society Benefit, General/Other Citizen Participation Programs
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults General/Unspecified Aging, Elderly, Senior Citizens
Short Term Success Adults' self-esteem and personal possibilities expand when they overcome a lifelong fear and learn to swim. Use of swimming for exercise; better health and fitness, decreased health costs. Increased quality of life and productivity. More need for public and private pools that already exist but which are underused.
Long Term Success
The ultimate change that results from our programs is the virtual end of drowning worldwide. 
Though some drownings will still occur—people will still get trapped in submerged vehicles, etc.—the useless loss of life just because someone fell out of a boat or jumped into a lake to get his dog, or a ferry sank or an adult fell into a backyard pool can end. If it can end, then it should and must end. It's just a matter of educating instructors and the public.
Secondly, personal empowerment and personal safety skyrocket when adults who have been afraid in water for decades overcome their fear and learn to swim. "Next, the moon!" is an exemplary comment of one of our graduates. The success and change of self-image ripples out into their lives and is a turning point.
Thirdly, an economic result: the growth and explosion of the water-and-swimming sports industries: tourism at beaches, snorkeling, boating, SCUBA diving, sailing, water parks. The biggest (and most invisible) limit to these industries' growth is the vast population of adults who cannot swim.
Program Success Monitoring
We know by comments like this:
"Thank you again for such a wonderful adventure, great vacation, and such a uplifting, inspirational, challenging, motivating learning experience, I had a great time, wonderful accommodations at hotel, very hospitable, I enjoyed my classmates very much, and meeting new ones from around the globe (literally). That says a lot about how sucessful your Miracle Swimming concept and program is. It was really nice meeting everyone at the reunion, the other instructors where great, and Annie, well.... she 's the bomb!!!!!
As I continue on my journey, and as I learn more and more about the ocean, my personal relationship with the ocean, as well as my respect and admiration for the ocean grows stronger, and stronger, when I returned home I did rent and see the movie, Ocean. It was great, very soothing, intriguing, gratifying to know more about this other world called ocean, and to see how the other half of the world  lives.:)
I admire you so much, you're a great inspiration to all of us. Have a great time in Turks & Caicos, wish I was there.
We also know it's working as students send post cards from their family vacations in Hawaii and the Caribbean and after going on cruises. They come back to learn advanced levels of watermanship: strokes, snorkeling, SCUBA; participating in triathlons, telling others; and when they  donate money.  We have a core of SCUBA divers who have been all over the world with us. They started at the very beginning.
Program Success Examples
Bob F. was a father of two but he could not swim with his children as they grew up. He took classes but they never worked for him. He vowed that when he retired, he would learn to swim. He found us when he was 67 in 2003. He loved learning to swim. He took our snorkeling class in Hawaii after his introductory classes. He didn't think he would ever want to scuba dive but once he took snorkeling, he found that he wanted to be deeper, closer to the reef. In 2008 he went on our 25th anniversary trip to Bali to learn to scuba dive. Upon passing, he declared, "I'm an imposter." He couldn't believe that HE was now a certified diver. Not only was he a new diver, but he was a safe diver: one whom the instructors and I were not worried about because we knew he wouldn't panic, due to his Miracle Diving training. Now Bob has been diving with us in Honduras, Cozumel, Hawaii, Turks & Caicos, and The Maldives. He is hooked. He is 77.
We have 30 such stories. Everyone who has taken our scuba class has become certified divers except 2.  One was 24 when she learned, and has made it her career.
After someone learns to swim, they're prepared to learn strokes, an efficient means of propulsion which is good for exercise without injury, participating in masters swimming for fitness or competition, triathlons, and passing swim tests.
It takes 30-40 hours to learn freestyle and the information a new freestyler needs to know. It takes 42 hours to learn the other three strokes, building on the knowledge achieved in the freestyle class.  This time includes an hour of video playback and discussion for every 2 hours in the pool. The Freestyle class is 10 three-hour sessions of one hour on land followed by 2 hours in the pool. The 3-Strokes class is 14 three-hour sessions.
The Freestyle class costs $2700 to stage .
The 3-Strokes class costs $3800 each offering.
Budget $9,200
Category Public, Society Benefit, General/Other Citizen Participation Programs
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Aging, Elderly, Senior Citizens Females
Short Term Success
Fewer drownings and more adults using swimming as exercise.
Long Term Success
People who could not swim their whole lives become lap swimmers or masters swimmers and triathletes. Health benefits, self-esteem benefits and productivity benefits, as well as personal safety benefits result.
It is possible that every adult could use swimming as a form of recreation and exercise. This could keep pools open, keep personal stress levels down (the therapeutic effects of exercise), decrease health care costs long term, and help people maintain wellness.
Program Success Monitoring We know it's working because we get emails.
Program Success Examples
When Bob retired, he finally had time to learn to swim. He had taken lessons before but they never worked. In his late 60s he took Miracle Swimming. Then he went with us to Hawaii to learn to snorkel. He couldn't believe it, but he found he wanted to get under water, to go deep, to see what was on the reefs below. He thought he should know how to do freestyle first (just his belief) so he took our Freestyle class. He began swimming laps at a new facility in the San Francisco Bay Area where he lives. He became a regular: 5 days/week. Then he wanted to be able to do other strokes like his fellow lap swimmers did. He took our 3-Strokes class and learned to legally do backstroke, breaststroke and butterfly: he could have entered a masters meet if he wanted to!
When all this time went by, he had warmed up to the idea that yes, even he could be a SCUBA diver. He went with us on our 25 Anniversary trip to Bali to take our SCUBA class and stayed for the extra week of diving vacation in SE Sulawesi (Indonesia). He has been to every diving vacation we have taken since: Honduras, Maldives, Cozumel, Hawaii, Turks & Caicos. So has his dive buddy who learned with him in Bali. 
Adults who have been afraid in water their whole lives dream of being able to see what's below the surface of the ocean and the sights they've seen on TV. When they finish our beginning classes, the possibility grows in their minds that maybe it is even possible to enjoy the ocean and learn to be under water. Our Ocean 101 and 202 classes are the transition classes, if needed, to prepare them for a week of learning to snorkel in Hawaii or St. John in perfect conditions with a gentle, focussed progression.
The SCUBA class takes a student who now understands how typical ocean water works and who can be at ease there to the skills, experience and new universe of SCUBA diving. It is successful because of the 5 Circles Teaching System. If the diving industry used this system, diving would become safer and the industry would explode. 
Snorkeling at a suitable destination is $6900.
SCUBA Diving costs $8300 to stage in Hawaii, our middle-cost venue.
Budget $6,900
Category Public, Society Benefit, General/Other Citizen Participation Programs
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Females Aging, Elderly, Senior Citizens
Short Term Success Personal empowerment, new kinds of vacations, and water safety.
Long Term Success More adults being safe in open water, able to enjoy the ocean, learning an appreciation of the ocean and its preservation; more water vacations by people who are equipped to participate in water sports. Positive messages about being in the ocean are spread by people who are informed, now that they have enjoyed it.
Program Success Monitoring
Comments like this, which are de rigeur:
Describe your Snorkeling class in 5 words:
"1 Fun, fun, fun
2 enlightening
3 inspiring
4 relaxed
5 challenging at just the right pace and with small "Next Steps" "
Program Success Examples
Students send us postcards from island vacations about their snorkeling with turtles, or off a boat, or in deep water and being able to enjoy it with their families.
Students returning to become SCUBA divers.
Just as every math teacher should be able to teach any student to add 2+2, every swim instructor should know how to teach afraid adults to swim. There is no other teaching system in the world that we know of that's literally infallible. The errors being made currently by instructors of adults in the U.S. and around the globe are virtually all the same, are based on a premise opposite of what is true, and are invisible to most swim instructors. The suffering of adult LTS students who are being taught the traditional way is devastating, unnecessary, and preventable. As far as we've been able to tell in 33 years, every adult can be successful.
Our program, a 16-lesson online training (35 hours) plus a 90-hour hands-on training plus a 4-month follow-up trains instructors to deliver Miracle Swimming.
It changes the teacher's paradigm of teaching, imparts deep understanding of learning and overcoming fear, and therefore impacts all their teaching, not just that of afraid adults.
Budget $13,120
Category Public Safety, Disaster Services, General/Other Safety Education
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Families Blacks, African Heritage
Short Term Success
More people learning to swim-- both adults and children. More people confident and safe in deep water: this empowers people's lives. Fewer accidents around water; fewer drownings, emergency room visits, ambulance calls, insurance claims, law suits, and blame for accidents. Less sorrow among families and communities. Better swimming pool programming: citizens getting what they need.
There will be new questions asked: "Can we take this paradigm to other sports and subjects? Yes! If so, what are the possibilities for learning?" How does The 5 Circles System apply to autism? How can we prevent obesity by teaching kids and adults to swim who couldn't learn before? Can learning to overcome fear build confidence and intrapersonal connection that helps shy children, bullies, and gang members? Yes. These are avenues to be explored in the future.
Long Term Success
1. All people will know how to swim. 
Only when all adults learn to swim will all children learn to swim.
2. All adults who take swimming lessons will succeed on their first try. They will love their swimming classes!
Swimming instructors will understand that adults are not children and have different needs for explanation, demonstration, proof, choice, responsibility, respect, and understanding of fear: how it's formed and how to heal it. Instructors will sever their mistaken association between strokes and safety. They will lose the mentality of managing fear and learn to teach fear's healing. Instructors will define safety in the students' terms rather than in their own. Instructors, and therefore the public, will learn and accept the correct definition of "learn to swim" which is not learning strokes, but the ability to rely on oneself for ones safety in deep water. Water safety will enter a new era of success and smooth sailing. The swimming sports will expand exponentially.
Program Success Monitoring
We receive feedback forms of every adult that's taught. We know the Instructor Training program is working because their students' forms read as happily as the forms of our own students.
Instructors order our Student Handbooks (to teach classes) in ever increasing numbers. Other instructors come to become trained. More queries about the training. Newly trained instructors send us thank you notes of astonishment about triumphs they've never had before.
If the training is not working, then 1) we have not screened applicants adequately, 2) trainees will not pass the online-training or hands-on training, 3) trainees will forget how to teach Miracle Swimming after a period of being out of the training or 4) trainees will not keep their agreement as licensees, once graduated.
How do we know what's not working?
Every swimming instructor isn't trained yet in Miracle Swimming. Damage is still being done to adults in every pool where adults are taught (because they are taught the opposite way from what works). We need to either find a way to convince swim instructors that there is something imperative they need to learn, or find other markets of people who want to help adults learn to swim. 
Because we're doing something that hasn't been done before we are still, after 31 years, finding the words to explain it. This past year has been a banner year for new words, but they haven't made the rounds yet.
A 10K grant we won in 2012 funded a national comparative study to examine the 5 national Learn-to-Swim systems in the U.S. to cull the best parts of each system in order to establish a new national curriculum for adults that would always work to take adults from A to Z on their swimming path, no matter what their goals were. 
Program Success Examples
"Dear Melon,
I just wanted to let you know how grateful I am to have had the opportunity to observe you teaching in Palm Springs and have you train me in the Next Step class. It is a true honor to be accepted as a Miracle Swimming Instructor and I feel so lucky to have trained with you. I learned an inordinate amount at the hands-on training....
...You taught me so much about how to teach, mostly by example. It was so rewarding to see the process working first hand.   ...I have done other certifications and have had dealings with many different program directors. I have never met anyone who provides as much support as you do. I am so grateful that you take my concerns seriously, for your encouragement and guidance with "difficult" students. Thank you for all your tips, advice....  I feel like there is still so much to learn! I look forward to joining you in preventing drowning worldwide." ZS, New York, 1/2014
This instructor has ordered more of our student handbooks for her one-person swim school in the 2 months since she completed the training than any instructor we've trained to date.
Program Comments by Organization

Opportunities: there is a system of teaching a stroke (freestyle) that should be married to ours. The two systems together can bring adults both safety in deep water and lap swimming for exercise which many adults want. The comparative study of adult LTS programs will bring this information to light. We can (and do) teach our graduates freestyle using this other system, but strokes should be left to the other organization so we can focus on getting the world over its fear of deep water. Only we can do that on a grand scale. But we need a distribution system. We could use their licensees if they would be trained. We could also use US Masters Swimming coaches if they would be trained.

2017: Progress has been made regarding collaboration between us and the freestyle instruction system mentioned above. We are in the early stages.
CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Melon Dash
CEO Term Start May 1983
CEO/Executive Director Email melon@miracleswimming.org
  • Melon Dash is Founder of the organization (1983). She has led it for 33 years to present with support from a 3 or 4-member board since becoming a non-profit in 2010. Has worn every hat. Main roles:
  • Teaching our proprietary system of adult LTS (learn-to-swim)
  • Keeping the business in the black
  • Maintaining relationships with graduates
  • Expanding classes across U.S. and beyond; expanding classes from pool to ocean
  • Building new programs requested by grads: Freestyle, 3 Strokes classes, snorkeling, SCUBA diving, SCUBA diving vacations around the world, learning to be a "spotter" (volunteer class assistant, becoming an instructor from being a graduate,
  • Training new instructors worldwide
  • Training new trainers of instructors
  • Negotiating pool rentals
  • Managing the corps of licensed instructors around the world
  • Managing employees
Former CEOs/Executive Directors
Senior Staff
Staff & Volunteer Statistics
Full Time Staff 3
Part Time Staff 2
Staff Retention Rate % 100
Professional Development Yes
Contractors 5
Volunteers 10
Management Reports to Board Yes
CEO/Executive Director Formal Evaluation No
Senior Management Formal Evaluation No
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Yes

Salvation Army of Sarasota

We are a member of the Sarasota tourism organization, VisitSarasota.org, as we bring tourism to Sarasota from the 50 states and other countries.
Member of VisitFlorida.org, the main tourism organization for Florida.
As a member team of US Masters Swimming, Miracle Swimming for Adults has a shared goal of getting more adults to swim. As USMS teams around the country reach out with masters swimmers teaching one-week LTS (learn-to-swim) programs to adults in their communities, our campaign says, "Please match traditionally-trained swimming teachers only with adults who can already swim and who want to learn strokes. Match Miracle Swimming teachers with adults who are afraid in water."
As winner of a grant from the National Swimming Pool Foundation's Step Into Swim program to create one million new swimmers by 2022, we have undertaken an educational role in demonstrating that the definition of what it means to learn to swim must be safety, comfort and confidence in deep water, not just the ability to do strokes without comfort or confidence.
External Assessments and Accreditations
Florida Department of Health2010
Awards & Recognition
Swimming Saves Lives Foundation: 2 full instructor training scholarships, total $3398United States Masters Swimming2012
$10,200 from Step Into Swim Campaign to Create 1M New Swimmers by 2022National Swimming Pool Foundation2012
Power 25: Top 25 Movers & Shakers in AquaticsAquatics International Magazine2005
Power 25: Top 25 Movers & Shakers in AquaticsAquatics International Magazine2010
Best Adult ProgrammingAquatics International Magazine2002
Risk Management Provisions
Risk Management Provisions
Government Licenses
Organization Licensed by the Government Yes
Fundraising Plan Yes
Communication Plan No
Strategic Plan No
Strategic Plan Years
Strategic Plan Adopted 0
Management Succession Plan Yes
Continuity of Operations Plan Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy No
Whistle Blower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy No
Policies and Procedures Yes
Management Comments by Organization
One or more of our licensed instructors is teaching Miracle Swimming without a license. The licensing agreement they signed prevents this. We seek restoration of harmony with these licensees.
 With our new pool, we suddenly have a new market, the local Sarasota market, who doesn't know we're here. The challenge is to fill our pool with classes, both local and those for tourists.
In 2016, we will select 3-4 new Board members from the community to augment our speed of reaching the organization's goals. 
We have leased a pool to call home in Sarasota, our first ever. It received major upgrades and opened in May, 2016 following a Kickstarter campaign that raised $80,000 in March. 
In 2016 we intend to publish the results of a Comparative Study of Adult Learn-to-Swim programs in the United States. This provides evidence of the advantages of Miracle Swimming over 3 other national programs of the 5 that exist. Two programs did not give permission to be studied. One is too new to be included but it is effectively a replica of one of the others. This is the first time we have research to support our position of "best in class."
We have a new Program Manager who is taking a load from the CEO which will add organization and the ability for the CEO to do more of what only she can do: finish writing The End of Drowning, develop an online Learn-to-swim course that works, and update our course for instructors; speak to LTS agencies; hire a director of instructor development.  
We changed our name to Miracle Swimming for Adults in May. This increases awareness of our mission as one for adults.
Management Comments by Foundation Government Licenses-Florida State Department of Health and Endorsement for Learn-to-Swim Program and Instructor Trainings-March 2010. See Other Documents, Other 3.
Multi-Media Comments by Organization
Our book and DVD have taught and brought thousands of clients. The demand for an online course is suggested by daily new subscribers to our YouTube channel and comments at our Facebook page. There is no such thing yet as an online class that works for afraid -in-water-adults.
 We also need videos for our distant Licensees who need training reviews but can't afford annual trips to Sarasota to do them in person.
Other Documents
Board Chair
Board Chair Ms. Terri A. Goodman
Company Affiliation myChoice Health Plan
Board Term Feb 2016 to Feb 2018
Board Chair Email Terri@miracleswimming.org
Board Members
Board Members
Mrs. Missy Cleary The Cleary Group Real Estate
Ms. Melon Dash CEO, Miracle Swimming for Adults, Inc.
Ms. Terri A. Goodman myChoice Health Plan A Generations Health Partners Company
Susan Mueller TECO Electric
Renee Piazza Collective Next
Ms. Beth Sullivan Esq.Arnold D. Levine & Associates, P.A.
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes
Board Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 6
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Gender
Male 0
Female 6
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 2
Board Term Limits 10
Board Orientation Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 9
Board Meeting Attendance % 97
Board Self-Evaluation Yes
Written Board Selection Criteria Yes
Board Conflict of Interest Policy Yes
% of Board Making Monetary Contributions 100
% of Board Making In-Kind Contributions 100
Governance Comments by Organization

Five board members represent Miracle Swimming students, the Sarasota community, Miracle Swimming Instructors, and Business. Our board needs to contribute financially in a more significant way and to be available to advise the CEO as decisions become bigger.

Fiscal Year Projections
Fiscal Year Start Month Jan
Fiscal Year Start Day 01
Fiscal Year Begins 2017
Fiscal Year End Month Dec
Fiscal Year End Day 31
Fiscal Year Ends 2017
Projected Revenue $265,000.00
Projected Expenses $245,000.00
Organization has Endowment No
Capital Campaign
Currently In a Capital Campaign Yes
Anticipate Campaign within 5 years? Yes
Campaign Purpose 1. Buy heater(s) for pool. 2. Fund build-out of office space at pool. 3. Online lessons that work for afraid adults. 4. Salary for new Director of Instructor Development for 1st year.
Campaign Goal $500,000.00
Campaign Dates July 2016 to Dec 2016
Amount Raised To Date 0 as of July 2016
IRS Form 990s
Audit/Financial Documents
Historical Financial Review
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$241,316$212,567$214,973
Administration Expense$81,561$72,604$57,700
Fundraising Expense$0$75$0
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.081.241.03
Program Expense/Total Expenses75%75%79%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue0%0%0%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$116,818$116,106$47,952
Current Assets$116,388$116,106$47,952
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$14$25,908$773
Total Net Assets$116,804$90,198$47,179
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201520142013
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountSwimming Classes $300,419Swimming Classes $264,505Swimming Classes $259,848
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, gifts, grants $26,715Contributions, gifts, grants $81,902Contributions, gifts, grants $14,724
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmounteBooks, Instruction Products $21,810Other Income $954Instructor Trainings $4,400
CEO/Executive Director Compensation $50,001 - $75,000
Tax Credits No
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities8313.434.4862.03
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Financials Comments
Financial Comments by Organization The two financial challenges we curently have are raising money for a heater and for a salary for a Director of Instructor Development who has been hired as of mid-July to help remove the load from the CEO.
Financial Comments by Foundation Financial information taken from IRS Form 990-EZ/990.  Individual contributions include foundation and corporate support.
Nonprofit Miracle Swimming for Adults Inc
Address 2750 Bahia Vista Street
Suite #105
Phone 941 921-6420