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The Y Helps Cobb Children Learn to be Safe Around Water


As part of the Y’s commitment to reduce drowning rates and keep kids safe in and around the water, the YMCAs in Cobb will provide scholarships for swim instruction and water safety to children from underserved communities in Kennesaw, Acworth & Marietta.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, fatal drowning is the second-leading cause of death for children ages one to 14 years old. In ethnically diverse communities, the youth drowning rate is two to three times higher than the national average, according to a USA Swimming study. Additionally nearly six out of 10 African American and Hispanic/Latino children are unable to swim, nearly twice as many as their Caucasian counterparts.

“Educating children how to be safe around water is just as important as teaching them to look both ways before they cross the street,” said Tiffany Strickland, Aquatics Director, McCleskey-East Cobb YMCA. “The Y’s teaches children of all ages and backgrounds that water should be  fun, not feared, and this practice not only saves lives it builds confidence.”

The Y has been a leader in providing swim lessons and water safety for more than 60 years.  The YMCAs in Cobb County continues to help youth and adults experience the joy and benefits of swimming, so they can be healthy, confident and secure in the water. There are a variety of programs to choose, including pre-school, school-age and teen swimming lessons.

In addition to learning lifesaving water safety skills, children can increase their physical activity by swimming. Swimming also motivates children to strive for self-improvement, teaches goal orientation and cultivates a positive mental attitude and high self-esteem. It also teaches life lessons of sport and sportsmanship, so that children can learn how to work well with teammates and coaches and how to deal with winning and losing—skills that last a lifetime.

To learn how to qualify for financial assistance, please contact East Cobb YMCA at 770-977-5991 or West Cobb Y at 770-423-9622.

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Kids Can TRI at the Y this summer!


Kids can TRI Trainings will be offered at the McCleskey-East Cobb Family YMCA July 8-August 12 to prepare for the Atlanta Kids Triathlon. Trainings held on Wednesdays, 5:30-6:30pm. Visit the Y website to register. 


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Learn to Swim at the Y

Learn to swim at the YMCA! Classes forming now. For more information or to register, call 770-977-5991 or visit


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Y Talent Showcase to benefit local programs


Buy your tickets online for the upcoming Y Talent Showcase featuring artists Trey Wright, Laura Coyle and more. The Showcase will be held on April 15 at Sacred Tapestry, 3000 Johnson Ferry Road,  starting at 7pm. Proceeds benefit YMCA programming at your McCleskey and Northeast Cobb YMCAs.

Tickets are only $12 and this a show you won’t want to miss! Register online: Class ID: 169828. For more information visit


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Don’t miss Healthy Kids Day at the Y


On Sunday, March 29th from 1:30 – 4 p.m., the McCleskey-East Cobb YMCA is holding a free community event to inspire more kids to keep their minds and bodies active.

McCleskey-East Cobb YMCA’s Easter Egg Hunt & Healthy Kids Day is the Y’s national initiative to improve health and well-being for kids and families, and features activities such as: games, healthy cooking demonstrations, arts and crafts, 1K race and more all to motivate and teach families how to develop a healthy routine at home.  LIFE University serves as this year’s sponsor with planned community support by the Atlanta Braves BAT team, Atlanta Hawks, Cobb County Safety House and more. YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day takes place at McCleskey-East Cobb YMCA 1055 E. Piedmont Marietta, GA  30062.  Arrive early as the Easter Egg Hunt starts promptly at 1:30 p.m.


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Walk Georgia – Move More. Live More

Join team YMCA of East Cobb in Cobb County’s upcoming Let’s Move Challenge. Cobb companies, schools and organizations are all joining the 12-week challenge to be more active and log activity for points.

All ages are welcome so be sure to register everyone in your family. Activity must be logged onto the Walk Georgia website for it to count toward the team’s total. Register at, then visit the YMCA of East Cobb’s Walk Georgia page to join the team.

Prizes will be awarded throughout the challenge and the organization with the most points wins a Golden Sneaker. The challenge begins February 16!


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Weekly Produce Stand at the Y


Starting Friday, February 13, from noon-1pm, East Cobb YMCAs are bringing back a weekly produce stand. They have partnered with Scholastic Market Day to bring a selection of 25-30 different fruits and vegetables. Buy all the fruits and vegetables to feed your family for the week for just $20.

Market held in the Northeast Cobb YMCA lobby, Bring your own bag, cash preferred.


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Video of the Week: YMCA Winter Feeding Program

Thanks to the community’s support through donations of time, money and food, the YMCA’s Winter Lunch Program was a success! In total, 198 volunteers, ages 3 – 83, came out to make and deliver lunches to 100 children over 9 days of winter break. They used over 600 food items which were donated to make healthy, well-balanced lunches.

Thanks to the YMCA for our Video of the Week.


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The YMCAs in Cobb County Offer Tips for Achieving New Year’s Resolutions


Each year, millions of Americans resolve to get in better shape and become healthier versions of themselves. According to a recent YMCA survey of more than 1,000 adults, less than a quarter of respondents kept their resolution in 2014. An overwhelming 71 percent said they tried but fell short, and 40 percent confessed that they made it through only a couple of weeks or months.

However, there’s hope for the coming year. One-third of survey respondents who plan to make a resolution in 2015 believe they’ll stick to it and reach their goals, with more than half believing that encouragement from others will keep them committed.

“Finding a supportive community like the Y can be beneficial in keeping resolutions on track, because our organization is so much more than a nonprofit gym,” Becky Shipley, Executive Director, McCleskey-East Cobb YMCA. “It’s a community of supportive neighbors that offers more health, more hope and more opportunity for the New Year and years to come.”

A positive outlook doesn’t always translate to action unless without setting manageable goals and leaning on the support of health and wellness communities. Here are five tips the YMCA recommends to help make a healthy New Year’s resolution stick:

  1. Start small. Set attainable resolutions. For example, if your goal is to exercise more frequently in the New Year, don’t schedule seven days a week at the gym. Start with a reasonable three days a week. If you’d like to eat healthier, try replacing desserts with other foods you enjoy, such as fruit or yogurt.

  2. Take it one step at a time. Making a New Year’s resolution doesn’t require you to reassess every little detail of your life. Replacing unhealthy behaviors with healthy ones takes time, so don’t become overwhelmed. Work to change one behavior at a time, and then go from there.
  1. Choose a facility that focuses on a holistic approach to health. When it comes to adding healthy behaviors – like working out – to your lifestyle, finding a facilitythat keeps you motivated is critical to maintaining your exercise routine. Before committing to a membership, take a tour of local gyms to find the best fit for you. Your facility should not be just a gym, but a community organization that offers more health, more hope and more opportunity.
  1. Establish a little friendly competition. More than half of the Y survey respondents felt a little “healthy competition” when friends encouraged them to be even more committed to keeping their New Year’s resolutions. Share your experiences with support groups – friends, family, fellow workout class members or close colleagues. Talking about your struggles and successes will make your goals more obtainable and less intimidating.
  1. Set New Year’s goals with someone you love. It’s easier to stick to your resolutions if you have a partner working toward similar goals. More than three-fourths of survey respondents indicated that they would set the same resolution for a member of their immediate family. Team up with a family member to set your 2015 goals, and establish a game plan that is dedicated to achieving them.

For additional tips or to learn more about how to get involved with the YMCAs of Cobb County, please visit

Set New Year’s Resolutions as a Family

image-ymca logo

The New Year is a time for new beginnings and for many to set goals that make them stronger in spirit, mind and body.

For the Y – a leading nonprofit for youth development, healthy living and social responsibility – one of the most important resolutions is to build or maintain family connectedness. Following are five things the Y recommends families do to be healthier and stronger throughout the year:

1. Eat Together – Sitting down for a meal together is a great time for parents to talk with their children, helping the family become more connected with one another. Set aside time for the family to eat breakfast, lunch or dinner at least once a week or every day if scheduling permits.

2. Volunteer – Giving back and supporting neighbors benefits everyone involved. It helps develop new relationships and teaches children and teens the value of helping others. Find an opportunity in your community that the entire family may enjoy, such as cleaning your neighborhood park or distributing food at a local food bank.

3. Learn Something New – Step out of your comfort zone, have fun and grow by exploring personal interests. Try something new together that you’ve always wanted to do, like pottery making or camping. Visit for opportunities.

4. Start a New Tradition – Traditions are an excellent way to create activities that bring families together. Talk with each other to discover common interests and then create an activity everyone can participate in weekly, monthly or yearly.

5. Be Active – It’s important to get at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day. Incorporate physical activity into your daily routines and spend more time walking places instead of driving improve your health and well-being. The Y offers many fun opportunities for families to be active together.

Visit to find a Y in your community. There are two YMCA’s in East Cobb and more around the metro area.

photo-beckyshipleySubmitted by Becky Shipley, Branch Executive Director McCleskey-East Cobb YMCA. (direct) 770-578-2800 (fax) 770-578-2793