YMCA’s program expands

Published 7:57 pm Monday, August 2, 2010

The core values — caring, faith, responsibly, honesty and respect — that the YMCA has become known for instilling in students are coming to a school in your neighborhood.

In September, the Suffolk Family YMCA will expand its before- and- after-school child care services at the YMCA to include programming at Hillpoint, Mac Benn, Kilby Shores, Mount Zion, Nansemond Parkway, Driver, Creekside and Northern Shores elementary schools.

“We want to make it more convenient for parents and service as many kids as possible,” said Mario Faulk, Suffolk YMCA’s senior program director. “The kids get an experience of a lifetime. It’s a safe atmosphere, we have hands-on activities and they make lifelong friends. Everything is about instilling our five core values.”

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The program is open to members and non-members for students, ages 4 to 12. The cost of the program is a $25 registration fee, which signs up a child for the school year, excluding holidays and vacations.

The before-school program runs 6:30-8:30 a.m. and after-school is 3-6 p.m.

“We get them ready for school, do arts, crafts and games and get them revved up for school,” Faulk said.

Students are able to choose between numerous hands-on activities or study time during program times.

“We don’t limit the kids,” Faulk said. “We make sure they rotate to our different stations.”

Stations include the cooking corner, where snacks are prepared; whacky science, where children prepare science projects; a physical time, allowing children to expend energy playing games like kickball and soccer; arts and crafts; homework time; and the music corner, where they can play musical chairs or dance.

While this is the first year the program will be held at the schools, the Suffolk Family YMCA has held its Before- and- After- School-Age Child Care at the YMCA for numerous years.

“I’ve watched kids go from our KinderCamp programs, through our school programs and are now counselors,” Faulk said.

There is still time to sign children up for the program, but there are only 75 spaces per school.

For more information regarding this program, call 934-9622 or visit www.ymcashr.org.

To register your child for the 2010-11 school year, visit the Suffolk Family YMCA.