Summer is one of the best times of the year. For Ys across Texas, we remain busy advancing our Mission and driving causes within our three focus areas, especially youth development. Many of you put your trust in YMCAs in Texas when you enroll your children in our afterschool and summer camps. In return, we promise that your kiddos will have fond, lasting memories as well as experience quality programming in environments that support healthy living. In 2011, Ys across the nation committed to implementing the guidelines of the National Institute of Out-of-School Time healthy eating and physical activity standards (HEPA). We know that in order to keep kids at a healthy weight you have to keep them moving, so Ys are committed to making sure your little one gets at least 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity each day. We also work to develop their brains through our efforts such as Summer Learning Loss Prevention; a program aimed at reducing learning lapse during the summer months in low income households. That’s how we build healthy spirit, mind and body for all.
Ys within the Lone Star state strengthen communities day in and day out. For example, our YMCAs in Fort Worth are teaching kids swim lessons which are valuable life skills. In fact, in 2013, Ys across Texas provided over 70,000 swim lessons to youth under the age of twelve. Texas is ranked 2nd in the number of drownings nationally and drowning is the leading cause of unintentional, injury-related death among children ages one to four in our state. It’s our responsibility to keep kids safe through education and outreach. To do that we go into the community where the people are like apartment complexes, schools or any place with a pool. Our partnerships across the state will help us continue to provide instructions in aquatic safety and drowning prevention. It’s how we deliver our cause, it’s how we strengthen community, and it’s how we engage our 1.3 million members!
Lastly, this summer we are pleased to announce a new slate of leaders that will serve Ys across the state in the role of CEO. We’re looking forward to fresh ideas that will strengthen our cause and help the Texas State Alliance move forward with our Movement. Community is our focus and we want to continue to build the foundation for the people we serve through our memberships, programs and partnerships. Here are some cool happenings at your local Ys.
James P. Finck, Chair
Texas State Alliance of YMCAs