Funding Life-saving Opportunities And Training

JCF Providing Life Jackets to save lives

To provide life-saving equipment and help prevent summer drownings, Project F.L.O.A.T. came into existence. With 8 drownings each year in our rivers, JCYF students built life jacket loaner stations in 3 county parks:

  • Indian Mary, Schroeder, and Chinook Parks

These life jacket stations are constantly restocked, providing all ages with life saving jackets.

This project took perseverance and dedication by three JCYF students, Kathrine Haley, Kaylee Henderson, and Milo Dolentree, as well as strong partnerships with: 

  • Grants Pass Steelheaders, County Officials, Sheriff’s Department, Grants Pass Parks Department, Hidden Valley Woodshop Students

A Long Road Ahead

Liability – who would take on the responsibility of making sure the life jackets were operational and up to code – slowed down the process.

This road block did not deter the JCYF students from their mission – decrease the drownings each year. Eight drownings a year were eight too many in the eyes of these student leaders.

Keeping the prize in sight, JCF finally was able to partner with the Rogue Steelheaders, using their expertise to make sure the life jackets would function correctly and do their job – save lives!


With relief and gratitude, in 2017, the life jacket stations were finally able to provide the community with life jackets for the entire family, if needed.

There are life jackets for toddlers, children, young adults, as well as adult sizes made available at three different stations.

Families borrow these life jackets while on the river, with the expectation that they will be placed back on the life jacket station once they are finished with their river adventures for the day.


From Memorial Day to Labor Day, JCYF students and advisors check the life jacket stations three times a week. During these checks, stands are checked for whether or not new life jackets are needed, which are then promptly restocked if necessary.

At the beginning of each season, JCYF has the Josephine County Sheriff department check the life jacket certifications to ensure public safety is always a priority!

Josephine County Foundation wants the river to be a place of fond memories, not one of tragedy – embrace the use of a life jacket!

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