[August 2017] – The 2017 Marshalltown YMCA-YWCA Annual Campaign has officially kicked off with Ronnie Manis and Samantha Vance leading a team of volunteers working to reach this year’s goal of $137,000.
Manis and Vance are both Board Members of the YMCA-YWCA. Manis is Principal of Anson Elementary School in Marshalltown. “The Y is a positive force in our community, and I’m proud to help lead its fundraising efforts. In 2016, more than 2,700 people were impacted through the Annual Campaign. We hope to serve even more this year.”
Vance, a Buyer Specialist with Five Star Home Team in Marshalltown, added, “I believe that being part of a community means supporting each other and making the world a better place. The people and programs at the Y do that every day.”
The Y works to address three urgent needs within the Marshalltown community:
• Improving health for everyone
• Providing a safe place for children to grow
• Strengthening families and developing future leaders
With support from Annual Campaign funds, more kids can have a safe place to learn and build self-confidence and more families can reconnect and grow together. The funds also support programs offered free of charge, such as LIVESTRONG at the YMCA for cancer surivors seeking to reclaim health and Teach Them To Swim, which is available to qualified students from Lenihan Intermediate School.
For more information about the Marshalltown YMCA-YWCA Annual Campaign visit www.ymca-ywca.org or contact Kim Jass-Ramirez at 641-752-8658.
As the season turns from spring to summer, the Marshalltown YMCA-YWCA encourages children and parents in Central Iowa to explore the many benefits of swimming, while also keeping safety top of mind.
“Swimming is not only a fun, healthy activity, but an important life skill for all children,” said Shelley Lechnir, Aquatic Director for the Marshalltown YMCA-YWCA. “Learning basic water safety skills is a great introduction to the world of swimming that often continues with swim lessons and competitive swim programs, and can even lead to a career.”
As part of National Water Safety Month in May, the Y encourages parents to take an active role in fostering a relationship between their children and swimming—beginning with water safety. Following are safety tips to practice when in and around the water:
Before letting your children hit the water this summer, remember these few tips to ensure it’s an enjoyable and safe experience.
- Never swim alone. Teach your children that they should only swim in locations where a lifeguard is on duty.
- Supervise your children whenever they’re in water. Whether it’s bath time or taking a dip in a pool or lake, make sure your children are within arm’s reach of you at all time.
- Don’t engage in breath-holding activities. Children shouldn’t hold their breath for a prolonged amount of time while swimming, as this can cause drowning and has several other severe physical side-effects.
- Wear a Life Jacket: Inexperienced or non-swimmers should wear a Coast Guard-approved life jacket.
- Don’t jump in the water to save a friend who is struggling in deep water. If a child finds their friend in deep water unexpectedly, their natural reaction may be to jump in the water to try to save them. Even if a child is a great swimmer, a panicked person will overpower them, pulling them underwater with them. The Y’s Safety Around Water program teaches the “reach, throw, don’t go” concept of using a long object to reach for them and pull them to safety. By using this technique children can help their friend without compromising their own safety.
- Enroll your children in water safety or swim lessons. Just like teaching your children to look both ways before they cross the street, having them participate in formal water safety lessons teaches them an important life skill. The Y’s Swim Lessons teaches children fundamental water safety skills and what to do if they find themselves in water unexpectedly.
Learning how to swim also has multiple benefits beyond the ability to enjoy water safely. It helps children strive for physical achievement, promotes healthy living and builds their confidence. To find out how to enroll your child in the Y’s Swim Lessons program, click this link or call 641-752-8658.
Pictured above is Tifany Mach with the items she donated to the YMCA-YWCA Fit Kids afterschool program
Tifany Mach is a 9-year-old participant in the Y’s Fit Kids afterschool program. After her first week in the program, she was already making plans to give back. “I thought the Fit Kids program needed some books, so I made a video at home asking people to donate and my mom posted it on Facebook.”
Several family friends responded with generous donations of books and stuffed animals. Tifany’s family pitched in as well, purchasing a new book case and other items for the program.
Tifany said she previously donated socks and undergarments to her school. “It felt really good to give, so I wanted to do it again.” Reading is one of Tifany’s favorite activities at the Y’s Fit Kids program along with playing games and free time.
Program Director Deb Grove said, “Tifany is an outstanding young person, with a very generous heart. Her gift to the afterschool program shows how it can positively impact the children who participate, giving them ownership of the program and allowing them thrive!”
Robby Tobias, who is the Fit Kids Coordinator at the Y, added, "Tifany embodies every core value of the Y. Her donation brings a great value and sense of respect to both the Fit Kid and Summer Day Camp programs. It amazes me that she understands some of our items are getting dated and that she would consider donating new ones.”
It took a little while for Diana and Bob Mumm to get started at the Y. They joined LIVESTRONG at the YMCA in 2015 after Diana’s third bout with cancer. 3 weeks later Bob suffered a stroke. They dropped out of the program, but were able to re-join this fall.
This time, they were both survivors; Diana from cancer, and Bob from stroke. Bob was committed to his own recovery, but he took seriously the role of being Diana’s support person. When she formed bonds with the other participants in the class, she told Bob to go ahead and work on building his own strength. Diana said, “I made some really outstanding friends. There is not one person in our group that I don’t think I could turn to for help.”
The couple strengthened their relationship as well. They had some good laughs together trying new classes like Zumba. Although reluctant to exercise, they felt better after every class. Bob has seen considerable improvement in his balance, and Diana has more energy to play with grandkids. They both agreed, “It has been a really great experience.”
The Y Swim Team had a great weekend at Regionals in Iowa City March 25th & 26th. Coach Shelley Lechnir said, "They did and amazing job! They made new friends and memories that will last a lifetime."
20th Place Team Ranking
6-Top 5 Finishes; 15-Top 10 Finishes
2 Relay Blue Wave Records (9 &10 girls 400 free relay; 9 &10 boys 400 free relay)
Top 3 Point Scorers: Averie Wittkop (93.5), Lesli Waltermire (71.5), and Noah DeSotel (33.5)