SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The National Drowning Prevention Alliance is wrapping up its annual symposium in San Diego.

In conjunction with that event, the City of Chula Vista Saturday hosted a Water Safety Festival. Children of all ages were able to take advantage of free swim lessons.

Organizers say it's critical for everyone to become proactive about drowning prevention.

"Every year, we lose 3,500 Americans to drowning and worldwide, 1.2 million people drown. And it's something people don't think about. But simple steps save lives and swimming lessons are an important part of that puzzle," Manuel Gonzalez, the Aquatic Supervisor of City of Chula Vista said.

The USA Swimming Foundation helped co-sponsor Saturday's Water Safety Festival.