HOUSTON (CW39) The Young Men’s Christian Association, commonly known as the YMCA, encourages parents to enroll their kids in free summer camps at locations across the Metro Houston area.

Law enforcement, city leaders, and camp officials say kids are less likely to engage in criminal activity when they’re enrolled in educational programs or sports.

The Executive Director of Youth Development, Curtis Lemieux, says the YMCA can become an extension of the “school experience”. He says camp can be a place for kids to find their sense of belonging. 

According to the YMCA, the organization has created change in our communities for over 160 years. The nationwide association has recreational and educational programs in almost every neighborhood.

YMCA

The YMCA offers a number of camps for all ages.  Lemieux emphasizes the importance of the teen camp. Especially, for ages 12 -15.

“It’s really important that they stay active. They stay engaged in their community. That program gives teens more choice and freedom. Helps them make some of those really important long-life decisions. They work on teamwork and positive self-image,” said Lemieux.

Now that “swim season” is here, The YMCA is offering free swim lessons to prevent kids from drowning.