Free Seventh-Grade Memberships Available at Summit Area YMCA
Thursday, September 12, 2013 • 1:00pm
SUMMIT, NJ - The Summit Area YMCA has announced a program offering free Y memberships to seventh-grade students at local schools within the Summit Area YMCA service area. As part of this program, seventh-graders will have access to the Y’s Wellness Center and they can participate in group social activities such as a beach party and seventh-grade Winter Olympics. Free seventh-grade memberships are available at both the Summit YMCA and Berkeley Heights YMCA.
The program is part of the Y's mission, as a cause-driven, community organization, to nurture the potential of every child, improving the health and well-being of our community, and providing opportunities to give back to neighbors. The Y’s Seventh-Grade Membership Initiative provides opportunities for teens to cultivate values, skills and relationships that lead to positive behaviors, better health and educational achievement. The program allows seventh graders to get together in a safe environment and participate in wholesome activities that encourage healthy living.
According to a Villanova University study reported in the Journal of School Nursing, the health of adolescents -- and the adults they will become -- can be linked to the health-related behaviors they adopt as children. Seventh grade can be a critical time in the life of an adolescent, who may be faced with opportunities to experiment with and participate in health risk behaviors. “Our hope is that this program will help promote self-esteem, healthy habits, and self-regulation through enriching activities at a pivotal time in the lives of young teens,” said Darrell Johnson, President and CEO of the Summit Area YMCA. “We see the programs and activities as having life-enhancing values but, from a young person’s point of view, they see them as simply fun.”
Local seventh graders who are interested in a free membership can download the Seventh Grade Membership application at www.thesay.org, click “Programs & Schedules” and then select either the Summit YMCA or Berkeley Heights YMCA. Once completed, the application, along with a copy of the student’s 7th grade schedule for the 2013-14 academic year, can be taken to Member Services at the Y. The Summit branch is located at 67 Maple Street, with the Berkeley Heights branch located at 550 Springfield Avenue.
Once registered, seventh graders are required to attend an equipment demonstration to learn about opportunities, safety and the Y’s general membership rules. The demonstrations are on an individual basis and they last approximately one hour. For more information, visit www.thesay.org.