Blog

Access, Privacy and Control: The Warning Signs of Abuse

Written by Jill Goyette At the Y, creating safe spaces for youth to learn, grow and thrive is our top priority – especially following the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Kids need a safe space now more than ever, and we take pride in the measures we’ve taken to help keep your kids safe. Whether you enroll your little one in our programs or not, we still want you to be well-versed in abuse prevention. Here are some important tips for parents to know as we work together to keep kids safe from abuse. Offenders seek three things in order

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Child Abuse Prevention: Know Our Employee Code of Ethics

  Written by Jill Goyette As the Executive Director of Youth Development, I spend a large chunk of time working to improve our youth programs. Part of this includes designing and implementing child abuse prevention trainings for staff and volunteers. However, I don’t do this work alone. There is an entire Child Abuse Prevention team at the Y made up of staff members from across our Association. We hold trainings year-round, but every April during Child Abuse Prevention Month the team focuses more of our efforts on raising awareness. These efforts go far beyond our daily child abuse prevention routines.

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Weathering the Storm

Written by John-Mark Beaver As I sit in my office typing out this blog article, it is a rainy and grey day in Oklahoma City. It reminds me of the mood that cast itself over our city, state and nation a year ago during the month of March when the coronavirus pandemic became a very real and present storm; one we had no idea how to weather. That same stormy gale that enveloped our nation engulfed the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City. As a member of the Board of Directors, I’ve witnessed our Association take on many a stranded sailor

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Esports Are Here to Stay

To many, the term “esports” seems like an oxymoron. How can you play a sport while at your computer? While matches won’t have gamers running up and down a field or shooting three-pointers, there’s still quite a bit of skill and practice exhibited during a game. Before we wade into the depths of how esports offer a similar experience to traditional sports, I think it’s important to first address the elephant in the room: yes, we are advocating for kids to spend a couple hours a week in front of a screen. However, we don’t think gaming is a replacement

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A Lifesaving Program From Your Local Y

Written by Sarah Boydstun When I thought about what to write for this blog article that would help articulate the impact of dollars given to our Annual Campaign, my mind started racing in many different directions. However, as the Aquatics Director for the North Side YMCA, it was only natural that my first thoughts settled on water safety for kids. Not enough people think about drowning as a leading cause of death for kids…and why would they? It’s certainly not a fun topic. Unfortunately, drowning is the second leading cause of death for children 0-19 years old1. On top of

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Your Kidneys and You

Written by Nathan Donald Chronic Kidney Disease currently affects over 37 million Americans. Sadly, nine out of 10 impacted are completely unaware since it is typically a silent disease, which means no symptoms are present until it’s progressed to an advanced stage. My name is Nathan Donald, a District Executive Director for the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City, and I was one of the 90% who was completely unaware I had kidney disease until it was nearly too late. In July 2017, my wife, Ashley, and I were in the midst of adopting our now three beautiful children. Part of

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A Heart-Healthy Checklist

February is American Heart Month, a time when organizations around the country share information and tips about improving (or maintaining) heart health. We’ve created a consolidated list that tells you what you need to know about heart-healthy living and steps you can take to improve the health and function of your body’s most vital organ. We’ll start with a definition of what “heart-healthy living” really means. According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NIH), “[h]eart-healthy living involves understanding your risk, making choices, and taking steps to reduce your chances of getting heart disease.”1 Understand Your Risk The first

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Counting the Value of Sleep

Do you remember when you were a kid and you so badly wanted to be a grownup? You’d dream of a time when you could eat whatever you wanted at every meal, stay up as late as you desired, and of course, you’d never have any homework – you could do what you wanted with your evenings. If you read that and thought, “Ha!”, congratulations- you’re officially a grownup. As we age, it becomes easier for our minds to drift to the worries of day-to-day life. Thoughts of the bills we need to pay, unfinished tasks at home and work,

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Why Your Local Y Needs You

Written by Paul Urquhart As an Executive Director for a YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City facility, I get a firsthand look at the heart of what we do every single day. We serve a wide range of individuals thanks in part to our financial assistance program and our community outreach efforts. The importance of our work and contributions within the community are better understood when we consider how these programs strengthen and shape the lives of our neighbors. When I walk through the Earlywine Park YMCA, I see kids learning to swim, seniors staying active, teens getting involved in community

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The Meaning of Governance

Written by Aishwarya Swamidurai I never could have imagined the sheer significance that such an unassuming, yet amazing program like Youth and Government (YAG) would have in my life. Perhaps I should have realized the program’s name told me exactly what I would come to learn about before ever starting this journey: government. My YAG journey began when I was just a small 7th grader. As a middle school student, there weren’t many things in life that I was truly passionate about. And even then, politics and governance were probably the last things you’d see on that list. To me,

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Child Abuse Prevention: Know Our Employee Code of Ethics

  Written by Jill Goyette As the Executive Director of Youth Development, I spend a large chunk of time working to improve our youth programs. Part of this includes designing and implementing child abuse prevention trainings for staff and volunteers. However, I don’t do this work alone. There is an

Read More »

Weathering the Storm

Written by John-Mark Beaver As I sit in my office typing out this blog article, it is a rainy and grey day in Oklahoma City. It reminds me of the mood that cast itself over our city, state and nation a year ago during the month of March when the

Read More »

Esports Are Here to Stay

To many, the term “esports” seems like an oxymoron. How can you play a sport while at your computer? While matches won’t have gamers running up and down a field or shooting three-pointers, there’s still quite a bit of skill and practice exhibited during a game. Before we wade into

Read More »

A Lifesaving Program From Your Local Y

Written by Sarah Boydstun When I thought about what to write for this blog article that would help articulate the impact of dollars given to our Annual Campaign, my mind started racing in many different directions. However, as the Aquatics Director for the North Side YMCA, it was only natural

Read More »

Your Kidneys and You

Written by Nathan Donald Chronic Kidney Disease currently affects over 37 million Americans. Sadly, nine out of 10 impacted are completely unaware since it is typically a silent disease, which means no symptoms are present until it’s progressed to an advanced stage. My name is Nathan Donald, a District Executive

Read More »

A Heart-Healthy Checklist

February is American Heart Month, a time when organizations around the country share information and tips about improving (or maintaining) heart health. We’ve created a consolidated list that tells you what you need to know about heart-healthy living and steps you can take to improve the health and function of

Read More »

Counting the Value of Sleep

Do you remember when you were a kid and you so badly wanted to be a grownup? You’d dream of a time when you could eat whatever you wanted at every meal, stay up as late as you desired, and of course, you’d never have any homework – you could

Read More »

Why Your Local Y Needs You

Written by Paul Urquhart As an Executive Director for a YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City facility, I get a firsthand look at the heart of what we do every single day. We serve a wide range of individuals thanks in part to our financial assistance program and our community outreach

Read More »

The Meaning of Governance

Written by Aishwarya Swamidurai I never could have imagined the sheer significance that such an unassuming, yet amazing program like Youth and Government (YAG) would have in my life. Perhaps I should have realized the program’s name told me exactly what I would come to learn about before ever starting

Read More »

Child Abuse Prevention: Know Our Employee Code of Ethics

  Written by Jill Goyette As the Executive Director of Youth Development, I spend a large chunk of time working to improve our youth programs. Part of this includes designing and implementing child abuse prevention trainings for staff and volunteers. However, I don’t do this work alone. There is an

Read More »

Weathering the Storm

Written by John-Mark Beaver As I sit in my office typing out this blog article, it is a rainy and grey day in Oklahoma City. It reminds me of the mood that cast itself over our city, state and nation a year ago during the month of March when the

Read More »

Esports Are Here to Stay

To many, the term “esports” seems like an oxymoron. How can you play a sport while at your computer? While matches won’t have gamers running up and down a field or shooting three-pointers, there’s still quite a bit of skill and practice exhibited during a game. Before we wade into

Read More »

A Lifesaving Program From Your Local Y

Written by Sarah Boydstun When I thought about what to write for this blog article that would help articulate the impact of dollars given to our Annual Campaign, my mind started racing in many different directions. However, as the Aquatics Director for the North Side YMCA, it was only natural

Read More »

Your Kidneys and You

Written by Nathan Donald Chronic Kidney Disease currently affects over 37 million Americans. Sadly, nine out of 10 impacted are completely unaware since it is typically a silent disease, which means no symptoms are present until it’s progressed to an advanced stage. My name is Nathan Donald, a District Executive

Read More »

A Heart-Healthy Checklist

February is American Heart Month, a time when organizations around the country share information and tips about improving (or maintaining) heart health. We’ve created a consolidated list that tells you what you need to know about heart-healthy living and steps you can take to improve the health and function of

Read More »

Counting the Value of Sleep

Do you remember when you were a kid and you so badly wanted to be a grownup? You’d dream of a time when you could eat whatever you wanted at every meal, stay up as late as you desired, and of course, you’d never have any homework – you could

Read More »

Why Your Local Y Needs You

Written by Paul Urquhart As an Executive Director for a YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City facility, I get a firsthand look at the heart of what we do every single day. We serve a wide range of individuals thanks in part to our financial assistance program and our community outreach

Read More »

The Meaning of Governance

Written by Aishwarya Swamidurai I never could have imagined the sheer significance that such an unassuming, yet amazing program like Youth and Government (YAG) would have in my life. Perhaps I should have realized the program’s name told me exactly what I would come to learn about before ever starting

Read More »