The Granite YMCA is hosting free community events to inspire more kids to keep their minds and bodies active at the annual YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day®, the Y’s national initiative to improve health and well-being for kids and families. Healthy Kids Day is an opportunity to ignite children’s imaginations so that they can imagine what they will accomplish this summer.
“When a child is healthy, happy, and supported they can make great things happen,” says John Harris, President and CEO of The Granite YMCA. “We believe in the potential of all children, and we strive to help kids find that potential within themselves. A child’s development is never on vacation and Healthy Kids Day is a great opportunity to educate families and motivate kids to stay active in spirit, mind and body throughout the summer.”
Healthy Kids Day, celebrated at over 1,500 Ys across the country by over 1.2 million participants, works to get more kids moving and learning, creating habits that they continue all summer long. When kids are out of school, they can face hurdles that prevent them from reaching their full potential. Research shows that without access to out-of-school learning activities, kids fall behind academically. Kids also gain weight twice as fast during summer than the school year. As spring turns to summer, Healthy Kids Day is a powerful reminder not to let children idle away their summer days. Instead, the Y wants families to focus on helping children imagine what they can accomplish over the summer.
The Granite YMCA Healthy Kids Day sites include:
- The YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown’s Healthy Kids Day takes place on Sunday, April 15 at 116 Goffstown Back Road, 1 – 3 p.m.. For more information, please contact Bob McKenney, Branch Director at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 603.497.4663.
- The YMCA of Downtown Manchester’s Healthy Kids Day takes place at the 116 Goffstown Back Road Allard Center branch location on Saturday, April 15 from 1 – 3 p.m. For more information, please contact the YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown at 603.497.4663.
- The YMCA of the Seacoast’s (Portsmouth) Healthy Kids Day takes place on Saturday, April 21 at 550 Peverly Hill Road, 1 – 3 p.m. For more information, please contact Kelli McKenna, Branch Director at email@example.com or call 603.431.2334.
- The YMCA of Strafford County’s (Rochester) Healthy Kids Day takes place on Saturday, May 12 at Camp Coney Pine, 63 Lowell Street, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. In the event of rain, Healthy Kids Day will be relocated to the YMCA of Strafford County, 35 Industrial Way. For more information, please contact Laura Prisco, Branch Director at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 603.332.7334.
- The YMCA of Greater Londonderry’s Healthy Kids Day takes place on Saturday, May 12 at 206 Rockingham Road, 1 – 3 p.m. For more information, please contact Lisa Fitzgerald, Branch Director at email@example.com or call 603.437.9622.
In celebration of YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day, the Y offers the following tips to help families develop healthy habits this summer that can have a lifetime effect:
• High Five the Fruits and Veggies – Make sure kids get at least five servings a day, the minimum number nutritionists recommend to maintain healthy childhood development. And to keep kids’ taste buds evolving, have everyone in the family try at least one bite of a new fruit or vegetable at least once a month.
• Read Together – The summer is a great time to enjoy books with summer program participants—and 30 minutes a day goes a long way! Take trips to the local library or create a family reading challenge to see who can log the most minutes of reading. Encourage youth to create their own stories as well.
• Get Moving! – Activities that require movement also help kids flex their mental muscle. Use materials in unique ways: ask youth to build models, manipulate tools or develop their own theatrical scenes.
• Play Together – Play may be the best way to prevent childhood obesity. By putting more play into your family’s day, you will soon find yourself getting the activity that will have your family feeling energized and strong.
• Make sleep a priority – Doctors recommend 10-12 hours of sleep a day for children ages 5-12 and 7-8 hours per night for adults. Sleep plays a critical role in maintaining our healthy immune system, metabolism, mood, memory, learning and other vital functions.
“Healthy Kids Day is free and open to the community and each of our branches will have a broad range of fun and engaging activities for participants to enjoy.” Mr. Harris said. About The Granite YMCA
As one of the state’s longest standing and most enduring non-profits, The Granite YMCA focuses on youth development, healthy living, social responsibility, and family strengthening. Across the state, its six branches engage 30,000 men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to improve their health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. In 2017, The Granite YMCA provided financial assistance and free services valued at over $1.63 million to 20,190 individuals. To learn more, please visit www.graniteymca.org