7TH GRADE INITIATIVE

The Gateway Family YMCA provides free memberships for all 7th Grade students as part of the NJ YMCA 7th Grade Initiative, a state-wide program designed to support and encourage teens to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Providing services for Eastern Union County and Northern Middlesex County for over 100 years, The Gateway Family YMCA has 5 YMCA branches in Elizabeth, Rahway and Union, NJ. 7th Grade students from the surrounding areas are invited to visit the YMCA and sign up for this complimentary membership.

The goal of the 7th Grade Initiative is to increase physical activity and support teens in the development of lifetime healthy habits while providing a safe and supportive environment at the YMCA. “We recognize that 7th grade is a pivotal time in youth development, where sports become more competitive and many teens begin to become less active,” stated Krystal. R. Canady, CEO, The Gateway Family YMCA. “We believe in providing these students with a positive environment, where healthy habits can be learned and reinforced, where new friendships can be made, and where positive programs and role models are part of the daily routine,” added Melynda A. Mileski, EVP/COO.

Local students are invited to visit The Gateway Family YMCA with a parent/guardian and proof of grade to sign up for the free membership this summer. Students are invited to participate in programs and services offered by the YMCA, and are provided with a complimentary Full Privilege membership including health and wellness options, swimming, group exercise, as well as teen programs. “Our goal is to provide ongoing support for 7th grade students, allowing them to strengthen healthy behaviors, increase activity, gain a better understanding of nutrition and the importance of continuing these habits into their adult lives,” stated Thomas Galuppo, Director of Healthy Living, Five Points Branch.

The Gateway Family YMCA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, health and community service organization of caring staff and volunteers dedicated to strengthening the foundations of community and stands For Youth Development, For Healthy Living and For Social Responsibility. The Y impacts the community by providing quality services to people of all ages, races, faiths or incomes.

For more information about The Gateway Family YMCA or the 7th Grade Initiative, please visit www.tgfymca.org or contact the Elizabeth Branch at 908-355-9622, Five Points Branch at 908-688-9622, Rahway Branch at 732-388-0057 or Wellness Center Branch at 908-349-9622.