Friday, March 29, 2013

Family Night: Minute to Win It!

Separation Anxiety Game 

       On Tuesday, March 26th Project Coach held another one of our fun and exciting family nights. Planned by our veteran youth staff and Springfield teachers, this night was amazingly successful with a great deal of play, enthusiasm, and relationship building. Modeled after the show Minute to Win It, the Gerena gym was set up with ten stations each with a one minute game or activity. Whether it was kicking their shoe onto a milk crate, separating different colored beads, or kicking as fast as possible to rack up steps on a pedometer, the kids and their families were fully engaged in the whole experience. Families who went to each station or won at least 6 stations got Project Coach prizes including jerseys, bracelets, and stickers. Families also enjoyed healthy fruit and vegetable smoothies provided by our partnership with the Holyoke Community College Nutrition Department. Throughout the whole night, everyone could feel the positive energy and excellent connections between PC families, staff, SPS teachers, and PC teen coaches.
       In accordance with the Project Coach model, the majority of planning and designing of the night fell to our veteran coaches who are now college students. They chose the games, planned the set up, made equipment lists and called all of the parents in our program to personally invite them. While it took many hours of planning, their ability to execute an engaging, multifaceted night of programming truly proved their skills as coaches, youth workers, and community organizers. Project Coach believes that this is the most effective model for both youth development and building community capacity. To have teens in the community organizing and running these events speaks to the power of youth and the assets within the North End waiting to be developed. Both the teens and Project Coach staff are eagerly preparing for our next family night on April 30th, knowing it will be a great success.

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