Blog

Hungry for Summer Vacation or Just Hungry?

When you think of summer vacation, you may think of swimming pools, popsicles, and fun evening barbecues. After all, our kids are excited to be out of school and partaking in the worry-free summer fun, right? Unfortunately for many kids in our state, that just isn’t the case. Instead of being filled with energy and joy about the break from school, summer vacation can be a scary time when many families don’t have the certainty and peace of mind of knowing where their next meal will come from. Instead of dad grilling burgers out back, he is driving his kids

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LGBTQ+ Identity, Child Development and How We Move Forward

LGBTQ+ IDENTITY THROUGH THE LENS OF CHILD DEVELOPMENT Anytime legislation is being discussed in the news and the impacted group doesn’t have a voice, it gives me some pause. The groups that seem to be removed from tough conversations around LGBTQ+ youth are probably the ones that matter most, such as Child Development professionals, education scholars, LGBTQ+ adults, and LGBTQ+ youth. As someone who has worked in Child Development and is also gay, I’d love to share some thoughts through the lens of child development. A common misconception is that only adults or older teens are capable of being part

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Father’s Day: More Than an Excuse to Buy a Tie

Inspired by a Mother’s Day sermon over 100 years ago, Sonora Louis Smart Dodd wondered why there was no similar holiday for fathers. One of six children, Dodd’s father was a single father and she felt he and others deserved to be honored. After securing support from ministers in Spokane, Wash., her idea came to fruition with the first Father’s Day celebration at the Spokane YMCA on June 19, 1910. Many years passed before the day became a national holiday, but today we use the day to honor the fathers and father figures in our lives. On Sunday, June 19,

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How to Be Welcoming and Affirming In Your Community

It’s increasingly important that more and more spaces are places where LGBTQ+ individuals can feel accepted, seen, and loved. Many people want to provide that safe space, but they aren’t quite sure how to go about it. Today, I want to share some tips on how to be a welcoming and affirming individual. TIPS FOR BEING A WELCOMING AND AFFIRMING INDIVIDUAL 1. Watch what you say and how you say it. Kids are always listening and watching. Sometimes even the smallest things can have the biggest impact. For example, treating the words “gay”, “lesbian” or “transgender” as bad words give

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Ways to Get Outdoors at the Y and Beyond

Summertime means families are spending more time together, both indoors and outdoors. With warmer temperatures and longer days, there’s more opportunity to enjoy the world around us, and we’ve compiled a list of ways to get outdoors at the Y and beyond. Join the Y’s Walking and Running Club The YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City has launched a walking and running club in northwest Oklahoma City. Hosted by our Northwest and North Side Districts, this club is free and open to the entire community. A volunteer coach will help ensure no one is left behind, welcoming walkers and runners of

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The Importance of Welcoming and Affirming Spaces

Written by Shade Jalo Last year, I wrote about what it means to be a gay young man working for the YMCA. I discussed how it had grown to become a home and family for me. It was easy to discuss something of that nature, but I think this year’s post might be a little more difficult to write. The fact of the matter is, the climate is a little bit different. There is a somberness to Pride this year as we watch across the nation while laws that are being passed that put LGBTQ+ youth in dangerous situations that

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The Importance Around Water Watchers

We’ve all seen the movies and television shows that feature a scene with drowning—there is typically a lot of yelling, lots of splashing over a long period of time while onlookers attempt understand what is happening and then perform a rescue. Unfortunately, Hollywood has taught us to look for the wrong things when it comes to water safety. Drowning is by and large silent—a person struggling for air cannot scream, and more likely you’ll see a person bobbing slightly up and down in the water with little to splashing. This is why Water Watchers are so important! It’s best to

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Swimming is an Essential Skill, Not a Privilege

Here at the Y, we believe that every person deserves access to water safety classes, no matter their circumstances. Each year we provide 2,400 of Safety Around Water classes and swim lesson scholarships to ensure that all families have the skills they need to keep them safe, opening up a world of possibilities for all! In the Y’s Safety Around Water program, children learn a sequenced set of skills over eight lessons, reducing their risk of drowning. A typical session includes: Exercises to help kids adjust to being in water. Instruction in “Jump, Push, Turn, Grab” and “Swim, Float, Swim,”

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Posture Makes Perfect

Occasionally in a group setting, when a new fitness move is introduced and repeated throughout, the body can get in the habit of using bad form or an old injury can create a bad relationship with affected muscles and joints. Our fitness professionals at Earlywine Park are certified to help you through a Postural Assessment and ensure your body is working at it’s best! The body functions at its best when it’s in correct posture. When the body is in correct postural alignment, it moves evenly and distributes weight appropriately. The muscles, joints and spine work together help you perform

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Face the Facts: Mental Health Awareness

In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month in May, the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City is encouraging community members to join the conversation about mental health. Mental health is how we think, feel and act. At the Y, we recognize that we all have mental health, and mental health is an important part of our physical health and social-emotional well-being, as well as a core component of our identity. Help the Y get the conversation going about mental health this Mental Health Awareness Month by sharing these facts with your friends and family: FACT: We all have mental health, not

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Hungry for Summer Vacation or Just Hungry?

When you think of summer vacation, you may think of swimming pools, popsicles, and fun evening barbecues. After all, our kids are excited to be out of school and partaking in the worry-free summer fun, right? Unfortunately for many kids in our state, that just isn’t the case. Instead of

Read More »

LGBTQ+ Identity, Child Development and How We Move Forward

LGBTQ+ IDENTITY THROUGH THE LENS OF CHILD DEVELOPMENT Anytime legislation is being discussed in the news and the impacted group doesn’t have a voice, it gives me some pause. The groups that seem to be removed from tough conversations around LGBTQ+ youth are probably the ones that matter most, such

Read More »

Father’s Day: More Than an Excuse to Buy a Tie

Inspired by a Mother’s Day sermon over 100 years ago, Sonora Louis Smart Dodd wondered why there was no similar holiday for fathers. One of six children, Dodd’s father was a single father and she felt he and others deserved to be honored. After securing support from ministers in Spokane,

Read More »

How to Be Welcoming and Affirming In Your Community

It’s increasingly important that more and more spaces are places where LGBTQ+ individuals can feel accepted, seen, and loved. Many people want to provide that safe space, but they aren’t quite sure how to go about it. Today, I want to share some tips on how to be a welcoming

Read More »

Ways to Get Outdoors at the Y and Beyond

Summertime means families are spending more time together, both indoors and outdoors. With warmer temperatures and longer days, there’s more opportunity to enjoy the world around us, and we’ve compiled a list of ways to get outdoors at the Y and beyond. Join the Y’s Walking and Running Club The

Read More »

The Importance Around Water Watchers

We’ve all seen the movies and television shows that feature a scene with drowning—there is typically a lot of yelling, lots of splashing over a long period of time while onlookers attempt understand what is happening and then perform a rescue. Unfortunately, Hollywood has taught us to look for the

Read More »

Swimming is an Essential Skill, Not a Privilege

Here at the Y, we believe that every person deserves access to water safety classes, no matter their circumstances. Each year we provide 2,400 of Safety Around Water classes and swim lesson scholarships to ensure that all families have the skills they need to keep them safe, opening up a

Read More »

Posture Makes Perfect

Occasionally in a group setting, when a new fitness move is introduced and repeated throughout, the body can get in the habit of using bad form or an old injury can create a bad relationship with affected muscles and joints. Our fitness professionals at Earlywine Park are certified to help

Read More »

Face the Facts: Mental Health Awareness

In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month in May, the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City is encouraging community members to join the conversation about mental health. Mental health is how we think, feel and act. At the Y, we recognize that we all have mental health, and mental health is

Read More »

Hungry for Summer Vacation or Just Hungry?

When you think of summer vacation, you may think of swimming pools, popsicles, and fun evening barbecues. After all, our kids are excited to be out of school and partaking in the worry-free summer fun, right? Unfortunately for many kids in our state, that just isn’t the case. Instead of

Read More »

LGBTQ+ Identity, Child Development and How We Move Forward

LGBTQ+ IDENTITY THROUGH THE LENS OF CHILD DEVELOPMENT Anytime legislation is being discussed in the news and the impacted group doesn’t have a voice, it gives me some pause. The groups that seem to be removed from tough conversations around LGBTQ+ youth are probably the ones that matter most, such

Read More »

Father’s Day: More Than an Excuse to Buy a Tie

Inspired by a Mother’s Day sermon over 100 years ago, Sonora Louis Smart Dodd wondered why there was no similar holiday for fathers. One of six children, Dodd’s father was a single father and she felt he and others deserved to be honored. After securing support from ministers in Spokane,

Read More »

How to Be Welcoming and Affirming In Your Community

It’s increasingly important that more and more spaces are places where LGBTQ+ individuals can feel accepted, seen, and loved. Many people want to provide that safe space, but they aren’t quite sure how to go about it. Today, I want to share some tips on how to be a welcoming

Read More »

Ways to Get Outdoors at the Y and Beyond

Summertime means families are spending more time together, both indoors and outdoors. With warmer temperatures and longer days, there’s more opportunity to enjoy the world around us, and we’ve compiled a list of ways to get outdoors at the Y and beyond. Join the Y’s Walking and Running Club The

Read More »

The Importance Around Water Watchers

We’ve all seen the movies and television shows that feature a scene with drowning—there is typically a lot of yelling, lots of splashing over a long period of time while onlookers attempt understand what is happening and then perform a rescue. Unfortunately, Hollywood has taught us to look for the

Read More »

Swimming is an Essential Skill, Not a Privilege

Here at the Y, we believe that every person deserves access to water safety classes, no matter their circumstances. Each year we provide 2,400 of Safety Around Water classes and swim lesson scholarships to ensure that all families have the skills they need to keep them safe, opening up a

Read More »

Posture Makes Perfect

Occasionally in a group setting, when a new fitness move is introduced and repeated throughout, the body can get in the habit of using bad form or an old injury can create a bad relationship with affected muscles and joints. Our fitness professionals at Earlywine Park are certified to help

Read More »

Face the Facts: Mental Health Awareness

In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month in May, the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City is encouraging community members to join the conversation about mental health. Mental health is how we think, feel and act. At the Y, we recognize that we all have mental health, and mental health is

Read More »