Event features a full day of activities to celebrate kids being kids.

Lincoln, R.I. – Following a year of social distancing, virtual school, mask wearing and endless hours of screen time, the YMCA of Pawtucket, is hosting their annual Healthy Kids Day® on Saturday, April 17 from 10am – 2pm at the MacColl branch in Lincoln, RI. Join the fun as the Y encourages families to take a moment to help kids be kids. The in-person event will feature physically distanced activities and be in accordance with CDC and state/local recommendations. The Y aims to provide a carefree day for children, celebrating what makes a kid, a healthy kid. The day-long event will feature activities such as scavenger hunts, family fitness classes, sports clinics, bubble making, healthy snack creation, free books and giveaways, camp tours, and arts & crafts to motivate and teach families how to develop and maintain healthy routines at home.

“As adults, we know that 2020 was difficult on so many levels—it’s important to remind ourselves that as much as we try to protect our kids from worry, they faced many of those same difficulties. As communities continue to reopen, the Y is here for families, helping kids recover both physically and mentally from a stress-filled year,” says Jeanine Achin, COO of the YMCA of Pawtucket. “We believe in the potential of all children, and we strive to help kids find that potential within themselves. When a child is healthy, happy and supported, they can make great things happen.”

Healthy Kids Day, now in its 29th year, is the Y’s national initiative to improve health and well-being for kids and families. The Y hopes to use the day to get more kids moving and learning, creating healthy habits they can continue while they’re away from the classroom. When kids are out of school, they can face hurdles that prevent them from reaching their full potential. Research shows that without access to out-of-school learning activities, kids fall behind academically. Kids also gain weight twice as fast during summer than the school year. Following a year filled with numerous changes and uncertainty, Healthy Kids Day is a reminder to families that we can help ensure all children have access to the key ingredients to reach their full potential, even during out-of-school time.

Recipe for a Healthy Kid 

In celebration of the YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day, the Y is focusing on five “ingredients” that make a healthy child:

  • Healthy Food – Children need at least 5 servings of fruits and veggies each day for healthy development. Kids who help make their own meals and snacks are more likely to try the food, so enlist children in meal prep to encourage tasty explorations.

  • Physical Activity – From increased screen time to virtual school, studies show that children moved less in 2020 than usual. Help kids get back into physical activity routines by setting at least 60 minutes for fun games and play every day.

  • Curiosity – Children who are read to by a family member at least three times per week are almost twice as likely to score in the top 25 percent in reading compared to their peers. Encourage children to access new wonders with their own library card. Many libraries now offer curbside pick-up too!

  • Laughter and Fun – It’s important to let kids be kids! Parents should make sure they are joining in the fun with their kids. Close the laptop, turn off the phone and have uninterrupted play time.  These opportunities allow adults to model a love for activity while providing invaluable family bonding time.

The YMCA of Pawtucket’s Healthy Kids Day takes place at the MacColl YMCA outdoor campus in Lincoln RI from 10AM-2PM and features fun, active play and educational activities.

For more information, contact Dan Cameron, Director of Family Engagement, at 725-0773 or visit https://www.ymca.net/healthy-kids-day.

About the YMCA

The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the U.S., 2,700 Ys engage 22 million men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Anchored in more than 10,000 communities, the Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change. The YMCA of Pawtucket is comprised of five branches across the state: Pawtucket Family YMCA and Heritage Park YMCA Early Learning Center in Pawtucket, MacColl YMCA in Lincoln, Westwood YMCA in Coventry and Woonsocket YMCA.