The Y is a cause-driven organization that is for youth development, for healthy living and for social responsibility. That’s because a strong community can only be achieved when we invest in our kids, our health and our neighbors.
In the metro Detroit region, we’ve worked with community leaders to identify community needs and establish regional community initiatives to address them. The YMCA of Metropolitan Detroit is committed to the following regional or national initiatives to strengthen communities in our service areas.
New Detroit Schools
The YMCA of Metropolitan Detroit has a varied and long standing history of dedicating the highest levels of resources and expertise to the field of education. From night classes, established in 1877 for young men who needed to earn wages during the day; classes organized for the study of the new “motor car,” the Detroit College of Pharmacy and the Detroit College of Law, the YMCA has invested in the future of Detroit through contributions in education.
YMCA educational initiatives, both past and present focus on meeting a community need, as well as fostering in that community the responsibility of citizenship.
The formation of an elementary school in the Detroit area was a natural next step, ensuring that students would learn the elements of community involvement and citizenship at an early age. In July of 2010, a charter was granted to the newly established YMCA Educational Services. Serving as a management resource to the school, the Y Educational Services selected its first Superintendent and Principal and named the K-5 elementary school YMCA Detroit Leadership Academy.
The Detroit SWIMS Initiative aims to help decrease the number of swim-related fatalities by giving kids the skills and confidence they need to safely enjoy the water.
Young people in underserved communities often do not learn the critical water safety and swimming skills to keep them safe, which results in a disproportionate amount of deaths and injuries each year. The Y is working to address this important issue by offering learn-to-swim programs and raising awareness of the importance of water safety in urban communities nationwide.
The program, started by YMCA life guards, focuses on early swim instruction techniques that allow a child to become proficient in swim strokes and water safety within only an 8 lesson program. The swim program takes children from a “fear of water,” to early safety skills, to basic swim strokes, to accomplished swimmers in a manner of weeks.
YMCA Healthy Kids Day
The Y is celebrating Healthy Kids Day on Saturday April 27, 2013 with free community events around the country that help families find fun through active play and educational opportunities and inspire them to carry that spirit of fun throughout their summer.
Summer is the time for kids to get up, get out and grow, but sometimes when the school year ends, so does a child’s exposure to activities that stimulate the body and mind. Healthy Kids Day will inspire kids and parents to take advantage of summer and give them the tools to grow and achieve.
Through Healthy Kids Day, our national initiative to improve the health and wellbeing of kids, the Y challenges families to Take on Summer by addressing critical gaps in kids’ health and education. Summer is the perfect time to make playing and learning a family goal.
As a leading nonprofit committed to youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, we encourage all families to attend Healthy Kids Day on April 27 in their community. For more information, about Healthy Kids Day in Metro Detroit Ys, please click through to your local Detroit YMCA.
The SWIFT Program
The YMCA Swift program promotes healthy choices and behaviors among youth 11-14 years of age by teaching them the social, psychological and health gains achieved by avoiding risky behaviors such as sexual activity and the use of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs.
YMCA Sexual wellness information for teens (SWIFT) is a federally funded grant program that provides a FREE, nine-hour abstinence approach to sexual health education to benefit the tri-county youth and ultimately improve community health throughout metro Detroit.
With the use of movies, games, electronic displays, and a little pop culture SWIFT Program Facilitators turn the once boring and uncomfortable topic of sexual wellness into a fun relaxed educational environment filled with meaningful discussion and enjoyment.
SWIFT uses this approach to reach youth ages 11 – 14 years old in the Counties of Macomb, Wayne, and Oakland of Metropolitan Detroit.