Coaches sought for active afterschool programs

Activate Phoenixville Area, a community wellness coalition which advocates for a more healthy community, is looking for volunteers to take part in special after school programs for elementary and middle school children.

“We are currently trying to recruit coaches for the fall season of ‘Girls on Track’ and ‘STRIDE’ for the Phoenixville area,” said Kim Lutschaunig, with Activate Phoenixville Area.

Activate Phoenixville Area is seeking two volunteers needed to coach the Phoenixville Area Middle School Girls on Track program, for 6th -8th grade girls, and two coaches needed for the Stride program for 3rd-5th grade boys at Schuylkill Elementary. The programs are held after school from 3:30 - 5 p.m. two times per week at the schools.

The programs being on September 23 and runs for ten weeks, but the coach training starts the week of September 8. Coaches must attend training and be CPR certified (training provided free of charge). Coaches receive all necessary materials and support throughout the program. Those interested in becoming volunteer coaches are required to undergo a background check.

“These programs teach a powerful curriculum. There are dynamic lessons integrated with running – it is balanced and non-competitive and includes fun activities like scavenger hunts and relay races, and fun learning experiences covering important topics like nutrition.” said Lutschaunig, who serves as a coach herself. “(The coaches) develop a relationship based upon trust, and teach kids how to be a good friends, how to handle bullying, keeping a positive and non-judgmental outlook on life.”

Coaches do not have to be elite runners, just responsible, encouraging individuals that can motivate and relate to kids. In fact, it is less about running than it is about doing other things to strengthen mind, body and spirit. Lutschaunig said all coaches get to have the amazing experience of being role models and leader for the kids.

“Coaches are there to make the kids feel safe and valued. Seventy-five percent of it is teaching life skills to the kids. You do not need to be a running coach… …more so a life coach and cheerleader for the kids.”

The programs culminate with the kids taking part in a 5K run – which Lutschaunig said is not nearly as intimidating as it sounds considering that the prior two and a half months are spent running, with a practice 5K included in the lead up to the fun finale .

“We do a lot of really great stuff,” she promised.

Plus she said there is still time for kids to sign up too – find out more about these programs by visiting Activate Phoenixville Area’s webpage (www.activatephoenixvillearea.org) and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Activate-Phoenixville-Area-APA/137219359681350

For additional information contact Kim Lutschaunig at tripleluts@comcast.net or 610-917-9890, ext. 25.

These programs are sponsored by Freedom Valley YMCA – www.fvymca.org - and Activate Phoenixville Area.