Kids Run Clubs at WVU Energy Express Summer Locations

Staying active in the summer time is easy with an Active SWV Kids Run Club

The Active SWV Kids Run Club program was incorporated into the WVU Energy Express locations at Beards Fork and Mount Hope, WV. WVU Energy Express is a summer reading program developed and facilitated by the WVU Extension Service. Active SWV staff and volunteers provided training and mentoring to the mentors onsite and assisted in leading the kids through a Fun Run event at the end of the program.

What is Energy Express?

Energy Express is an award-winning, 8-week, summer reading and nutrition program for children living in West Virginia’s rural and low-income communities. With Energy Express, more than 3,000 children statewide gain or maintain reading levels during summer months through creative, colorful and captivating uses of art, drama and vocabulary. This program also provides children with two nutritious meals each day during the program, helping to ensure our youths are fed each day even after the school year comes to an end.

What is the Active SWV Kids Run Club?

The Active SWV Kids Run Program seeks to improve the health outcomes of southern West Virginian youth by empowering them with the opportunities, skills, and knowledge to be physically active. The central goal of the Active SWV Kids Run Club Program is to instill healthy habits in our area’s youth and to get them excited about running and physical activity. Explore the other programs Active SWV offers for adults, businesses, and municipalities.

All kids that participated in the Energy Express program completed 30 minutes of physical activity each day, as a part of the Kids Run Club program, two of which were designated run club training days. The group ran laps around their track and played fun running games throughout the program to get ready for their celebratory 10 minute fun run!

“Ava enjoyed being a member of the Mount Hope Energy Express Running Club. Every Tuesday and Thursday she would remind me that she needed to wear her running shoes and she made sure to do her stretches. The program allowed her to understand the importance of a healthy lifestyle and she was super proud of being a part of a “club”. During the evenings, she’d run laps and we would time her. She’s competitive by nature, so the club helped her to set individual goals and understand the importance of self awareness and listening to her body. The boost of confidence your program gave to her is priceless! At an early age, we have taught our children that being active is a key part of a healthy life! It’s a lifestyle for us! In our family, there’s three factors to a well balanced life: eat (food is fuel), sleep, and exercise. Physical activity is so important to us because it makes our family happy and healthy! It also puts the kiddos sound asleep at night!” Sara Prior, parent of participant.

Who made this possible?

A huge thank you goes out to the site supervisors, mentors, volunteers, and parents. It take a village to raise a child.

  • Mount Hope Energy Express Site
    • Site supervisor; Alma Logan
    • Site mentors; Michaela Conelly, Brianna Baker, Breanna Bennett, Emma Pino, Emily Phillips, and Lydia Bunner.
  • Beards Fork Energy Express Site
    • Site Supervisor; Tia Coleman
    • Site mentors; JaQualla Smith, Bailey Bowling, Xavier Austin, Paris Fairfax, Yrik Banks, and Malik Banks.
  • Active Southern West Virginia
    • Volunteer coach; Sarah Mitchem, “I would like to be involved and give back to the community where I grew up. As an Exercise Physiology major at WVU, I am passionate about the benefits of exercise.”
    • Fun Run event volunteers; Emily Major and Bobby Mitchem

How do I get a Kids Run Club at my school this fall?

Active SWV Kids Run Clubs are designed to help participants develop an enjoyment and understanding of exercise, while learning healthy habits that extend beyond the program. The experience of Active SWV Kids Run Clubs is positive, inclusive, and non-competitive.Kids Run Clubs last 6-8 weeks and culminate in celebratory Fun Runs for participants, where Active SWV helps facilitate a non-competitive, race-like event to honor the hard work of program participants. Many Kids Run Clubs add their own flair to the Fun Run event, adding in themes like Color Runs, Costume Runs, and Superhero Runs. The event is not timed, and all participants receive finisher medals and certificates. Siblings, parents, and family members are invited to join in on the event, cheering on their child or running alongside them.

Starting an Active SWV Kids Run Club is easy! Planning requires an introductory meeting, volunteer coach recruitment, and a volunteer coaches training. Run Club Coaches are equipped with a program manual full of training plans, games, stretches, and safety tips guaranteed to guide you through the whole experience. All you need to bring is a positive attitude and a desire to help kids in our community get physically active! After this initial planning, a start date is chosen and the fun begins. The group will train for 6-8 weeks and then end the program with a celebratory Fun Run. Active SWV helps facilitate elements of the Run Club program, but volunteer coaches take the lead. After the coaches training, Active SWV will be there to help at the start of the season, for a mid-point assessment, and to help facilitate the Fun Run. Learn more here; Active SWV Kids Run Clubs.

Contact Active SWV

  • phone (304) 254-8488
  • email [email protected]
  • website www.activeswv.org
  • Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ActiveSWV/
  • Office address 116 North Heber Street Suite B Beckley WV 25801
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