The YMCA: A Community Center For All

Posted by Tom Crimmins Realty, Ltd. on Sunday, June 24th, 2018 at 11:25am.

The Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA), more famously known as the Y is a worldwide organization that began in Geneva, Switzerland. Many may think it is just a place to get their daily work out but it is so much more than that. Founded 174 years ago by George Williams, the Y's mission was to uphold Christian principles by developing a healthy "body, mind, and spirit". However, in modern times, it is more focused on building a strong sense of community and family. To strive for that goal, they have tons of programs that they offer at the center. 

Programs tend to vary in different locations but always intend to better the community, but they will always have something for everyone from the youngest to the oldest. In our New York City there are locations in each borough that serve everyone that comes through the door.

Even for the youngest members of the household, there will always be something to enroll in and have fun and sometimes even learn. For every one of preschool age and younger, there is a myriad of programs to enjoy. For those who just need their children to be watched during their time at the Y, there are specialists there to make sure your children from infant age to childhood will be in a safe environment as well as having fun and learning. Besides the daycare styled program, there are other programs such as swimming, sports, camp, and language classes. For over 150 years, the YMCA has been teaching children to swim and still uphold that tradition today. 

For the Youth age group, there are the swim, sports, and play, programs but there are also educational ones as well. The swim, sports, and play include the same programs as the preschool age group but specifically for this age group. The educational programs include the Rowe Scholars (which helps students and their parents realize that going to college is attainable), Jr. Leaders Club (where tweens learn to improve leadership skills while also trying new ways to better their community), STEM ( the Science Technology Engineering Mathematics program which helps spur children's interest in this field no matter the socioeconomic background), Tutoring (if your child needs any extra help with an exam or homework, Y after school (where if your child needs an after school activity or if you just are still working), and lastly Youth & Government ( which lets the youth experience our nation's democratic practice at an early age to learn about debates, policies, and write legislation). 

Today's teens are tomorrows future and the YMCA tries its very best to create the best future possible. Teens are given the choice for either a day time or overnight camp where they are offered the same programs as the youth group age. Teens are also offered Martial Arts, Life Guard Training and Certification, Competitive Sports and Swimming, Dance, Health and Fitness, Teen Centers ( where teens have fun and safe place for teens to socialize, exercise and have positive interaction with peers and YMCA counselors), Teens Take the City ( where teens engage in community mapping to figure out how to better their community, work in small groups to identify a law to address the issue, develop a policy proposal that is debated for other teens at City Hall, learn the history and function of NYC government, and meet and interview a NYC official), and the Y Global Teens (which is a leadership development and service learning program that engages teens in a year-long empowering international experience culminating with a summer service abroad experience). 

Adult programs vary under six categories: Health/ Well-Being & Fitness, Sports & Recreation, Group Interests, Health Appraisals/ Screenings, New American Initiative/ ESOL, ELESAIR and Y Roads. 

Health/ Well-being & Fitness contains four sub programs which are Group Exercise Class ( which range from aerobics, yoga and zumba which are all free with membership), Personal Training (which is there or anyone to who needs further motivation to help reach their goals), Water Activities (such as adult swimming lessons), and Y Fit Start (that is a 12 week program where you will meet up with a personal coach 4 times over the 12 weeks to develop a personal regimen). 

Sports & Recreation also have four subprograms which are Team Sports (such as volleyball and basketball), Dance (such as African, ballet, capoeira, contemporary, jazz, salsa, ballroom and tap at specific branches), Running & Walking (which help you hone your running technique), and Private Lessons (where a certified trainer can help you improve any athletic ability). 

Group Interest divide under two categories which are Arts & Humanities (that include writing, drawing, painting, and pottery) and Computer Classes (which can help anyone learn the basics of a computer with an expert).

Health Appraisals/ Screenings also have two sub programs. The first being the Nutritional Counseling where you maintain a healthy life style with a personal nutritionist. The other is LIVESTRONG at the Y where participants "work with Y staff trained in supportive cancer care to achieve their goals, such as building strength; increasing flexibility and endurance; and improving confidence and self-esteem".

The New American Initiative/ ESOL was created to help the new immigrant population to help them achieve literacy,cultural competence and self-sufficiency. The sister program to ESOL is the English Language an Employment Services for Adult Immigrants and Refugees (ELESAIR). ELESAIR is "a one-stop assistance center where immigrant adults with little means and limited English skills can obtain the full range of services - instructional, vocational, placement and support - so essential to their prospects as New Yorkers".

Lastly, the Y Roads program' initiative is to help people whether it ranges from obtaining a high school equivalency, getting a steady job, or just managing/ fixing poor behavioral skills. Y Roads is meant to help everyone with the tools they need for a better life.  

Family is everything and where would a family be if they were to never spend time together? Of course the YMCA realizes this and it is exactly why they offer four programs for the entire family. The Y offers Family Classes (that ranges from fitness to art), Family Nights (that have free events which help families grow, learn, and play together. They usually include arts & crafts, recreation, open gym, and games), Family Recreation Time (when families can spend time together during the open gym and pools just for families) and Family Camp (where the family can sleep in cabins, eat in the dining hall, play camp games, and spend time together). 

The YMCA offers a multitude of programs for every age and person. Whether it be purely recreational, cultural, or just educational, the Y will always be committed to growing a healthier and stronger community. Staten Island may be the "forgotten borough" but the Y has not forgotten about us. There are actually two locations on the island. One of which is on 651 Broadway, Staten Island, NY 10310 which is a quick 3 minute drive or 10 minute walk to our main office at 304 Manor Road. We here at Tom Crimmins Realty also strive to cultivate our community just as the YMCA does. For any real estate related questions, feel free to call us at the number (718) 370-3200 or stop by at one of our offices. 

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