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Posted 10/02/2020 2:30:49 PM by Tanya Colaco

January 2020 was a busy and fun month for us here at the YMCA. The first month of the year is always full of promise. So many people are motivated to start anew with their health and fitness goals.
 
To help keep that momentum going, we welcomed both new and existing members at different events and activities in each of our four centres of community last month. You may have even participated in a few! Check out some of the highlights from January 2020 at the Y: 

Members Had Their Say at the Tong Louie Family YMCA

Member feedback at the Tong Louie Family YMCA

At the YMCA, we're always looking for ways to serve our valued members. To know how we can support our members, we gave them an opportunity to share their feedback with us and have some fun at the same time. In order to do this, we grabbed some jars, picked up some colourful pom poms and came up with four things we've heard members tell us they wanted to see more of at the Tong Louie Family YMCA. Members would select the option that resonated with them and place a pom pom in the appropriate jar. However, we know the four options we came up with don't begin to cover all of the possible things that members would like to see more of, so we included a suggestion jar too!  

Community Wall: What Do you Do for Self-Care?

Promoting healthy living is a huge priority for the YMCA. So, in January we encouraged our Tong Louie Family YMCA members to share with us and their fellow members, different things they do for self-care. Members of all ages were eager to add to our community wall, and this event facilitated many important conversations between friends and family members. The responses were as diverse as our Tong Louie community and everyone took away some great ideas on how to care for their bodies and minds.  

Setting Goals at the Chilliwack YMCA 

Resolutions abound in the month of January but sticking to them can always be a challenge. That’s why we held not one, but two Goal-Setting Workshops at the Chilliwack YMCA. We teamed up with the very skilled and caring Meagan Hamilton MA, RCC of Thrive Collective who hosted both workshops.
 
Meagan guided participants through the workshop and gave them practical and helpful tools to set achievable goals. These included learning how to properly define goals and identify the ones that our participants already had. Participants also learned about the value of taking incremental steps when working towards a goal, as well as the importance of not using emotions to measure them. Participants loved the sessions and walked away with a newer perspective on setting goals.

Community Bonding Over Wine and Cheese

Community-building and fostering connections is at the very core of our work here at the YMCA. That’s why we hosted a Wine and Cheese social for those who are new to the Chilliwack Y. It was a great way for members to mix and mingle and get to know each other, all while enjoying delicious food and drink by Simply Savoury Valley Catering and Sister Spirits Events, respectively.
 
If you missed out on this event, no problem! The Chilliwack YMCA will be hosting a Wine and Cheese social again on February 25th

Saying ‘Thanks’ with Juice and Smoothies 

Langara Family YMCA Motivation Month juice event

At the Langara Y, we hosted a few fitness socials as a way to welcome and show our appreciation to our members, as well as to help them out with their fitness goals. At each event, a YMCA personal trainer was also in attendance to chat with members and answer questions.
 
For one of our socials, we teamed up with the Juice Truck to host a juice hand-out. Members had the chance to come mix and mingle or simply grab and go. Similarly, we also handed out delicious smoothies. At both events, we had many great conversations with our members and got to learn about some of their goals for the year on our Motivation Board!  

Learning about Mindfulness at the Langara Family YMCA’s Y Café

On Wednesday mornings, the Langara Family YMCA hosts a drop-in café in one of their multi-purpose rooms. Members stop by for coffee and conversation and to build connections with their fellow Y members.
 
During one of these Y Cafés in January, Sarah Blackmore MA, RCC and YMCA Mental Wellness Programs Manager, held a short mindfulness session. She shared helpful strategies to manage stress and anxiety. She also spent some time talking about the benefits of mindfulness and guided members through a short mindfulness exercise. Overall, our members loved it and left feeling more empowered.
 
If you’d like to learn how to practice mindfulness or other helpful strategies, learn more about the YMCA’s Mental Wellness programs!  

Self-Reflection at the Robert Lee YMCA

The event that stood out at the Robert Lee YMCA was the Resolution & Motivation Board which we hosted in the lobby. Many of our members stopped by to grab a snack and chat with us. They also used it as an opportunity to slow down and reflect upon what was motivating them.
 
What’s amazing is that so many people had many different stories to share. One lady shared her mental health story with us saying, “Rediscovering exercise has helped my depression. I barely was able to leave my house in 2019. Now, I'm able to begin to function again. Thank you, YMCA."
 
Another member said to us, “I come to the YMCA every day. It’s not a choice. I have to or I feel terrible.”
 
While another joked with us and said, “Treats. The only reason I exercise is so that I can snack. Seriously!”
 
The simple act of slowing down and thinking about what was motivating our members was very powerful for everyone who participated. Some knew right away, while others needed some time to think it through.
 
With that in mind, we encourage you to give it some thought too!
 

About Tanya Colaco

Tanya is the Digital Communications and Marketing Coordinator at the YMCA of Greater Vancouver. She’s an avid foodie, enjoys learning new things and loves to travel. Tanya is also an “animal person” and can never resist petting any cat or dog that crosses her path!

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