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April 23, 2018
Summer is the ideal time for kids to get up, get out and explore. But, for some kids, summer means no access to recreational and educational activities to help them learn, grow and thrive during out-of-school time. As a result, some kids can experience learning loss and gain weight twice as fast than during the school year. That’s why the Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA offers summer camp – to make sure kids and teens in the Tampa Bay area are adventurous, active and healthy this summer.
YMCA Summer Camp offers youth fun and unique experiences with an opportunity to explore the outdoors, meet new friends, discover new interests and create memories that last a lifetime. “Summer camp is an excellent way to ensure kids stay engaged socially, physically, and academically throughout the summer,” says Director of Camping Services Mark Battig. “In Y Summer Camp, kids are in a welcoming environment where they can belong, they’re building relationships, developing character and discovering their potential. We really encourage parents to give their kids the gift of camp to keep them active and engaged all summer long.”
Since summer is synonymous with swim season, the Y’s Go for Green program provides free swim lessons to Y summer campers unable to pass the swim test. They receive free swim lessons throughout the summer until they pass the swim test and get a green wristband.
While camp keeps children busy and engaged, kids can’t focus when they’re hungry. In partnership with Hillsborough County Public Schools, the Y’s Summer Food Program helps make sure kids can enjoy free healthy meals and snacks throughout the summer. Last summer, the Tampa YMCA served kids over 75,000 healthy meals and 300,000 nutritious snacks. The Summer Food Program runs from May 29 until August 3 and is open to all kids in the community ages 18 and under. To find out the time frames when free breakfast and lunch are available, contact your local Y.
Whether it’s keeping kids fed, safe around water, or active and engaged throughout the summer, the Y has a program to benefit all youth in the community. To learn more, visit http://www.tampaymca.org/
Written by Lalita Llerena, Tampa YMCA