Summer Camp & Summer Learning Academies at the YMCA

Believe it or not, summer is right around the corner. With school letting out and months of long days ahead, the time to get your child enrolled in fun summer activities is now! The YMCA has fantastic options for rising first-graders through rising eighth-graders, but don’t wait too long to register, because these programs are popular!

“Our programs focus on the total child and engage campers physically, mentally, emotionally and socially,” said Executive Director for the YMCA Child Care Services Branch, Roderick Howard. “Campers get a chance to engage with their peers and be led by role models for ten weeks of the summer. Campers engage in things from group games, arts and crafts, songs, chats, STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), to swimming and more. For our kindergarten–5th grade camp, we offer half- and full-day options. We also operate two preschool camps for campers who are one to four years of age, but have not started kindergarten yet. These preschool programs are run at the William G. White YMCA and the Jerry Long YMCA.”

It can be hard to keep your children focused on learning exercises throughout the summer months, but many teachers encourage reading, writing and educational opportunities to keep little minds developing outside the classroom. The YMCA has created programs that allow children to learn while having fun! “Summer Learning Academies are camps that run five to six weeks and really focus on struggling learners who need that extra push (academically) during the summer months,” said Howard. “Campers focus on reading and math skills, as well as STEM activities. The summer academies are run out of local schools in the county and are led by YMCA staff and certified teachers from the local schools. These academies also include an enrichment component, including games, chants and songs. This program is free, but students need school recommendation for this program.”

Registration for the learning academies is open at host schools. For more information, call 336.727.4849. To register for summer camp, visit, or visit any YMCA of Northwest North Carolina branch.

Many families worry about how to afford childcare during summer days when children are not in school, and the YMCA can be a very cost-effective option! “The YMCA does not deny access to anyone because of the inability to pay,” said Howard. “Financial assistance is available for those who apply and qualify. [Also] being a member at the Y saves you between $140 (full day) and $180 (half day) per month.” Cost breakdowns can be found on the YMCA summer camp website.

With so many options through the YMCA, there is something for everyone! Don’t hesitate to secure your child’s spot for this year’s summer camps and summer learning academies. You can also find information about specific specialty and sports camps on the website.

For more information, call the YMCA’s Child Care Services office at 336.727.4849.