YMCA gears up for summer

Staff Report

The countdown to summer is on and kids aren’t the only ones looking forward to the summer months.

YMCAs across Northwest North Carolina are getting ready for programming and activities that stimulate both mind and body in an effort to help children have an amazing summer.

“It’s important that children both play and learn throughout the summer,” said Roderick Howard, executive director for YMCA Childcare Services. “From summer camp to swim lessons to providing free meals, the Y is able to support all children in our community and helps them discover and reach their full potential.”

YMCA summer camp at the Y provides kids with adventure, healthy fun, personal growth and friendships that can take a so-so summer and turn it into a memory that lasts a lifetime. The Y’s camps provide a welcoming environment for kids where they can belong, build relationships, develop character and discover their potential.

Since summer is synonymous with swim season, the Y encourages families to explore the benefits of swimming while also keeping safety top of mind. Swim lessons at the Y increase the accessibility and enjoyment of swimming to all ages and skill levels. Y Swim Lessons accommodate varying abilities to help foster a sense of achievement as swimmers’ progress between levels. Learn more at ymcanwnc.org/swim.

Without access to educational activities during the summer, children who are already behind in reading are at risk of falling further behind their peers. For children who need additional help with their reading skills, the Y is offering a learning loss prevention program for children called YMCA Summer Learning Academy. The program supports cognitive, physical and social-emotional growth while focusing on helping children read at grade level.

And while these programs keep local children busy and engaged throughout the summer, kids can’t focus when they’re hungry. Children who rely on low-cost lunch plans during the school year are at risk of going hungry when school’s not in session. The Y’s Summer Food Program, in partnership with Second Harvest Food Bank and other local food banks, helps fill that gap to make sure kids can enjoy healthy meals and snacks throughout the summer.

Whether it’s keeping little ones full, helping children read, keeping kids safe around water, or keeping them active and engaged throughout the summer, the Y has a program to benefit all youth in the community.

To learn more, visit ykidscamp.org or call 336-727-4849.

Staff Report