Pick up a water bottle starting September 1st at your YMCA Calgary Member Services Desk* and collect change for YMCA Strong Kids.
What is Change for Strong Kids?
Change for Strong Kids is a fun fundraising event where members and participants save spare change in a Change for Strong Kids bottle provided by YMCA Calgary to raise money for our annual Strong Kids Campaign. This year YMCA Calgary’s goal is $1.5 million, all money raised goes towards providing children and youth with great experiences such as swimming lessons or going to camp.
How can you participate?
Stop by the member services desk at your YMCA Calgary to pick up your bottle. Bottles are limited so visit soon!
Place your Change for Strong Kids Bottle in a convenient location at home or your office where family members or co-workers can deposit spare change over the next few months. No donation is considered too small.
When your Change for Strong Kids Bottle is full (or by November 15th), please return it to the member services desk. We will graciously take your donation and give back your bottle for personal use. You can also fill it as many times as you’d like!
*Participating YMCA branches include Shawnessy, Crowfoot, South Health Campus and Saddletowne.
Thank you Calgary! Your generosity is amazing.
Once again, Calgarians have shown their care for this city and community.
Our Kids in Motion and Day Campers planned to raise 8,000 lbs of food for the Calgary Food Bank this week.
We haven’t even finished weighing, and we’re already at 10,682 lbs! That’s a lot of food!
[Update: Tuesday, August 19 - With boxes from the branches, our total food collected is 11,442 lbs!!! Thank you, Calgary!]
If you’d still like to donate, drop off food donations at any YMCACalgary location before Monday, August 18 or contact the Calgary Food Bank directly.
Check out our photo album on Facebook for some shots of excited kids, big bags of food, and smiling Food Bank staff!
Did you know, one family in Ogden donated 500 lbs of rice! Jenna, a YMCA staff member, drove over and picked up 25 sacs of rice because they were too heavy for the campers to carry down the block.
On some streets during the food collection there would be a dry spell of a long line of houses with no donations. But when campers saw one of those white food bank bags, their excitement was huge and they would all race to see who could get there first and what kinds of tasty treats were being donated to help feed other kids.
In Huntington Hills, campers and volunteers from Eagle Well Servicing loaded 1120 lbs of donations into an SUV. Then our friends at Eagle bought an ice cream treat for the hard-working campers.
Eagle Well Servicing also donated nearly 1000 lbs of food, purchased and collected by their staff.
Southland Transportation donated a bus to help some of our Kids in Motion campers get around and hand deliver food donations to the Calgary Food Bank.
At the Y, we’re all about community-building and leadership.
Day camps are no exception. We want to inspire the kids who spend their summer with us to be healthy and active, community-impacters, and influential leaders. Community service projects like the Food Drive are a big part of this.
Yes, the kids are young. And yes, the food drive is a small part of their camp experience that is full of other fun, exciting things.
But we do believe it makes an impact on the kids, and helps them understand the power and importance of helping others.
Rabbitt is a Discoverers counsellor at Eau Claire YMCA. Her campers are 6 and 7 years old and she thinks the repeated discussions and activities about the food drive have made sense to them.
“During snack time on Monday, we talked about the fact that some kids can’t afford snacks and that is why the food bank is important,” Rabbitt says, “Then when we were handing out the fliers and bags on Tuesday we talked about how those of us who have snacks can help other kids get snacks. And then, on Thursday when we go out to pick up the food, it clicks for the kids who didn’t understand it yet.”
For Rabbitt, connecting the task or cause to something the campers understand, like snacktime, helps it make sense.
“Repeating it a lot during the week helps them understand. Most of them get it and are excited to help,” Rabbitt says.
For some campers, the food drive is a game, but for many, it is a tangible opportunity to learn about their community and helping other kids – because after all, 42% of people who use the Calgary Food Bank are children.
As of August 14, the following camps still have availability:
12Y Kananaskin 13-day Traditional | Aug 17 – 29
15Y Pioneer 13-day Hike | Aug 17 – 29
14-15Y Pioneer 13-day Hike/Horse Gray Jay | Aug 17 – 29
12-13Y Kananaskin 6-day | Aug 24 – 29
There is also room in our Family Camp running August 24-29.
CONTACT US: 403-269-6156 or toll free 1-866-430-9622 As with all YMCA Calgary programs, financial assistance is available to those who qualify.
Tabata Bootcamp is a 9-week program designed to help you achieve your goals of weight-loss, toning, fitness & increased energy through 4 components:
- Exercise Program
- Nutritional Guidance
- Social Support & Motivation
- Assessment & Results Tracking
Attend 3 group classes each week and do daily 7-minute workouts at home using the Tabata Bootcamp website.
Attend 4 group sessions with a Registered Nutritionist to learn how to:
- complete a food journal
- make healthy choices and understand why they are healthy
- track your calorie intake
- manage your portion control
Social Support & Motivation
Motivation and support from others is a key part of reaching your health goals. Connect daily with your coach and your peer group. Get to know other participants who have similar health and lifestyle goals.
Assessment & Results Tracking
Get help assessing and tracking your progress so you can really see the difference your hard work is making.
Space is Limited. Register Today!
9 Week Program begins Monday, September 15, 2014
Crowfoot YMCA- 403-547-6576
Cost: $300 for YMCA Members $399 for General Public
Members can register online (Course Code# 96028)
Contact Bogi for more information.
Reach for your goals today!
Enjoy a day on the course while helping children and youth in our community. The goal of YMCA Calgary’s annual Strong Kids Tournament is to give 850 children and youth in our community a YMCA experience. Hope you’ll join us!
18th Annual YMCA Strong Kids Golf Tournament
Thursday, Sept 25, 2014
Calgary Elks Lodge & Golf Club
$250 per golfer
11:00pm Registration and lunch
12:00pm Tee-off (shotgun start)
6:00pm Banquet dinner and silent auction
If you’re not available to golf, you can still support the tournament as a sponsor. For more information about the tournament or sponsoring opportunities, contact:
403-969-7180 | firstname.lastname@example.org
403-781-1663 | email@example.com
During the week of August 11, 2014, the15th Annual YMCA Calgary Kids in Motion and Day Camps Food Drive will take place.
Enthusiastic YMCA kids and youth will be collecting food donations in various Calgary communities in support of the Calgary Interfaith Food Bank.
Kids in Motion is a summer volunteer program for young people ages nine to 12. Participants volunteer in meaningful projects in their local community and in return gain opportunities to enjoy recreational activities. The values, lessons and opportunities youth gain from this program are invaluable. They learn to work as a team, share pride in a job well done, make a positive contribution to their community and develop lifelong leadership skills.
August 13, 14, & 15 please support Kids In Motion participants and our day-campers as they collect donations for this year’s drive. Be sure to watch for your Food Bank bag and reminder flyer a few days before the food drive begins.
You’re invited to our annual YMCA Strong Kids fundraiser, Jump For Joi Skip-a-thon!
Join us for an afternoon of fun including a silent auction and special guests.
Wednesday, August 13
12:00 – 5:30pm
Jump for Joi honours the memory of Joilinn Edgar, former YMCA Calgary day camp counselor and passionate supporter of YMCA Strong Kids.
For more information please visit Member Services at Shawnessy YMCA or call (403) 256-5533
Here’s a unique volunteer opportunity for those who love math!
The Community YMCA was excited to offer a hugely successful pilot program for high school math tutoring during the 2013/2014 school year. The Tutoring Table program was designed for motivated high school students struggling in math who were not able to access professional tutoring due to financial barriers. This program was offered in partnership with the United Way of Calgary and Area through the All In for Youth initiative. We couldn’t have done this program without the support of all of our volunteer math tutors! We had a total of 73 volunteers and 2284 volunteer hours during the first year of the pilot project.
Volunteers and students had a lot of positive things to say about the program. In fact, not only did many students see their grades increase, they also had a more positive attitude towards math and towards themselves. Volunteers built positive relationships with the youth, were able to help students through many struggles in math and even offer some career advice! Most of all, volunteers were happy that they could use their skill-set in math to help young people grow and thrive.
We are pleased to say that with the success in year one, the United Way of Calgary and Area has not only decided to continue the Tutoring Table program, but to expand it to even more locations in 2014/2015. Beginning this fall we will be offering it at four YMCA branches: Saddletowne, Eau Claire, Shawnessy and Crowfoot, as well as a fifth location in North-Central Calgary.
Of course, with such expansion we also need many more volunteers to help high school students with their math during the upcoming school year. In fact, a total of 45 new volunteers will be needed at these three locations: Saddletowne YMCA, Crowfoot YMCA and our North-Central location at Thornhill Baptist Church.
If you love math, enjoy working with youth and would like a unique opportunity to bring these two together while giving back to the community, please connect with Nada Rustom, Tutoring Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 403-537-2713
Tutoring begins the third week of September and training is in August so if you’re interested please get in touch as soon as possible as all volunteers must complete a City of Calgary Police Information Check before starting, which can take up to 5 weeks.
by Angela Brown
Newcomer Programs Manager
Some ideas, activities and tips to share with everyone!
Motivate someone new
Although regular exercisers may not see their healthy lifestyle choices as anything out of the ordinary they may unconsciously be providing motivation to others. A simple Facebook post referencing a completed workout or simply watching another dedicated individual can provide a new exerciser that little push they need to get and stay active. Convince a friend to tag along to a boot camp or walk in the park and they will be forever thankful!
Try a new fruit
Summertime is filled with delicious and fresh fruits. Skip the ice-cream cone and curb that sweet tooth with a big fruit salad. Fruits are loaded with healthy nutrients!
BONUS TIP: fruit such as watermelon is also full of hydration!
Run on Dirt or Grass Instead of Pavement or Black Top
The sun doesn’t absorb into the dirt as easily and therefore will be cooler than the other surfaces.
Strength Train a Minimum of 2 Times a Week
Summer is a fun yet busy time for many people and workouts can often get pushed to the side. Weight training 2 times a week is enough to maintain muscle mass for an easy return to regular training in the fall.
Do a Good Deed
It is shown that people feel happier after preforming a Good Samaritan act. Mental health is just as important as physical health! For instance you could purchase a $5 coffee gift card and give it to a stranger, open the door for someone or it can be as simple as smiling at someone.
Volunteer at the Humane Society
The weather is perfect for a walk in the park. Stop by your local humane society and offer to take some dogs for a walk! Spending time with animals has also been proven to have a very positive affect on one’s mental health.
Try a New Physical Activity
Stuck in a gym rut? Summer is the perfect time to try hiking or a new active water sport such as paddle boarding or kayaking. All of these activities require great core strengthening and you may develop a new love for doing physical activity outdoors.
Go to the Farmers Market
Not only are you supporting your local businesses but you are getting locally grown and organic foods. Freshly picked vegetables and fruit have a much different taste than store-bought!
By Cassidy Sherrington
Shawnessy YMCA Strength & Conditioning Director
YMCA Calgary and the Flames Foundation for Life are excited to announce a partnership to provide free YMCA memberships to all City of Calgary youth registered in Grade 6.
Grade 6 Membership Benefits:
- Free membership for grade 6 school year
- Access to all 5 city-wide YMCA Calgary locations
- Access to no-cost programs such as Adventurers (leadership training including character development, communication, volunteerism, and fundraising) and Active Y Kids (physical activity, nutrition, and goal setting) and Flames Friday & Teen Night activities
- Advanced registration and discounted fees for programs
Why Grade 6?
Studies have shown grade 6 is the age in which a child is faced with many decisions, often with two options – a healthy one and an unhealthy one.
At YMCA Calgary, we believe youth need a place to belong, to feel safe, and to explore and grow during the important developmental stage of their grade 6 year. We want to support our youth in this critical time as they:
- age out of traditional care models
- develop new interests
- prepare for junior high
We intend to give grade 6 youth opportunities around leadership, recreation, and holistic health. Our ability to promote and build healthy relationships will help the youth
- expand their pro-social networks
- have opportunities to build healthy relationships with peers
- establish relationships with positive, adult role models
Why is the Flames Foundation for Life partnering with the YMCA?
The Flames Foundation want to make Calgary the healthiest City in Canada and this is a step. We want youth to not only be active but to become educated in a healthy lifestyle. This includes teamwork, leadership, social skills, goal setting and positive decision making. We hope that this age group is exposed to elements of a healthy lifestyle and will have the education required to motivate healthy choices moving forward in their physical and mental development.
How does a Youth get a Grade 6 Membership?
Drop in to any YMCA Calgary location to complete a membership form for your youth (parent/guardian signature, proof of child’s grade required).
When does it start?
The Grade 6 Membership program will officially launch September 1, 2014. Students in grade 6 will be able to get a one year membership valid September 1, 2014 to August 31, 2015, with the program continuing for new grade 6 students in September 2015.