By Ian Faulkner, Staff Writer
Wednesday, November 7, 2012 —
The Stanly County YMCA had a ribbon cutting ceremony on Monday morning for its newest program: LIVESTRONG at the YMCA.
This is a free, 12-week program dedicated to cancer survivors. LIVESTRONG at the YMCA is designed to help those with cancer rebuild their spirits, develop a support system and regain their physical faculties.
“We are so excited about starting the LIVESTRONG at the YMCA program at the Stanly County YMCA,” said Kassie Taylor, financial development director at the Y.
“We started talking about the need in our community for an assistance program for our cancer survivors earlier this year. We realized that there is a real need for us to provide some type of program and we thought we would be a great partner in that effort,” Taylor said.
There was a grant available from LIVESTRONG at the YMCA to be able to offer this service to the citizens of Stanly County.
“Ys are chosen as sites through a very competitive grant process. We had to show the community need, the community’s willingness to support the service, as well as the Y’s ability to provide what is necessary to make it a successful program,” YMCA Executive Director John Lowder said.
In April of this year, the Y learned that they had been accepted into this program. They were one of 115 Ys chosen to use this program.
“LIVESTRONG wanted to partner with YMCAs to be able to offer this type of program, because the Y is concerned with healthy living and developing a strong spirit, body and mind,” Taylor said.
The program is currently under the pilot stage, meaning this is a trial-run. LIVESTRONG at the YMCA will run through January. Assuming the pilot program is a success, a permanent program will begin in February.
The Stanly County Y took referrals from oncologists and surgeons to fill the 6-10 available spots. All participants must be referred into the program by their oncologists or surgeons and must meet specific physical abilities. Any cancer survivors interested in participating in the program should contact their physician for a referral.
The program will take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. over a 12-week period. In addition to this free service, patients will also receive a 3-month subscription to the Y free of charge. During the program, patients will undergo an individualized fitness regimen in a group setting.
After being informed that the Stanly County YMCA was one of the newest Ys to participate in the program, three instructors and one director started the rigorous training process.
“I want to thank our instructors for their dedication to this program: Anissa Chapman, Derrick Almond and Rosa Zunino,” said Kristen Underwood, LIVESTRONG at the YMCA program director.
“We kick-off the program today, dedicating our Yellow Wall of Honor,” Taylor said.
The wall will honor cancer patients by allowing people to purchase colored ribbons to place on the wall. The person to be honored will have their name written on the ribbon and the color of the ribbon will correspond to the type of cancer. Ribbons will be available at the front desk of the YMCA office.
For more information on the Stanly County Family YMCA or their new LIVESTRONG at the YMCA program, visit stanlycounty ymca.org.