The Active SWV Kids Run Club program seeks to improve the health of southern West Virginia’s youth by empowering them with the opportunities, skills, knowledge, and confidence to be physically active. The central goal of the program is to instill healthy habits in our area’s youth and to get them excited about running and physical activity. Active SWV hopes that all participants find joy and confidence with running and physical activity, so that they can continue to be active beyond their time in the Club.
The Active SWV Kids Run Club program is a 6 to 8 week volunteer–led initiative designed to help youth develop a lasting enjoyment and understanding of exercise while learning healthy habits and confidence in their abilities. Kids Run Clubs are completely free to students and schools, making them accessible to kids who may not have the resources to participate in other organized sports. Any student may take part, regardless of their physical activity level or experience. The Kids Run Club program is proudly represented in elementary and middle schools throughout our region.
Volunteer Coaches participate in a coaches training with an Active SWV staff member where they are equipped with a program manual full of training plans, games, stretches, and safety tips guaranteed to guide them through the whole experience. After Coaches select the practice days and times that work with their schedule, the Kids Run Club will train for 6-8 weeks and end with a celebratory Fun Run. Any interested parent, teacher, faculty, or community member can volunteer as a Coach, and no one is expected to have any prior experience coaching or running. All volunteers need to bring is a positive attitude and a desire to help kids in their community get physically active! For more information on the Kids Run Club process, take a look at the Kids Run Club Manual or email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.
Kids Run Club participants fill out a pre and post season survey to evaluate the effects of the program. The collective survey data is analyzed at the WVU School of Public Health to determine what changes occured. Here is a summary of the 2019 spring and fall session results. (*indicates statistical significance)
In just four short years, the energy and response generated by the Active SWV Kids Run Club Program has been phenomenal. Over 2,000 kids and hundreds of volunteers have gotten involved each year. The program began with a pilot club at just one school in 2015. Now, Active SWV Kids Run Clubs have been established at 29 schools and community groups in our region. Many Kids Run Clubs have participation numbers made up over half of eligible aged students at their schools! This demonstrates the strong need for support of the Active SWV Kids Run Club program from teachers, students, families, and the community. It’s a program that students are excited to participate in and that schools are excited to be a part of. Support Active SWV Kids Run Clubs with financial donation here.
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The Active SWV Kids Run Club program believes in the value of encouraging youth to be physically active daily. Volunteer with this after school program to help inspire and encourage youth to be healthy.
Contact Youth Program Director India Krawczyk for more information and strategies on how you can specifically be involved in getting kids active!