The YWCA: Downtown Green Bay’s little secret

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The YWCA has been a staple in the downtown community for almost 100 years. A lot has and still goes on under the YWCA’s roof; from swimming lessons, gymnastics and after-school care to fitness classes, birthday parties, career coaching and more, the YWCA is a busy place! I often say that I would need a sky scraper (or at least 20 floors) to get through my “elevator speech” about everything the YWCA has to offer. All of our programs and services are integrated together to empower women, inspire children and create stronger, healthier families in our community.

On a weekly basis our Health & Fitness Center offers over 80 water and land exercise classes! Land classes include everything from Yoga, Boxing Bar Blast, Cardio Dance, Cardio Express, Time to Tone and Zumba. Our newest class, Rock N’ Stroll, is a mommy fitness class where mom’s workout by strolling their little one around our gym while the instructor incorporates cardio and strength exercises for all levels. As an added bonus, at the end of class there is a playtime for the kids! Or, if classes aren’t your thing, do your own workout with a variety of cardio machines and free weights in our fitness center.

In our two 88 degree pools, we offer water exercise classes (I highly recommend the H2O Circuit–talk about a workout!). We also offer open swim times throughout the week for adults and families. Our exercise pool features a 2 ½ foot play area, 2 raining towers and water spray jets perfect for the kiddos! In fact, if you’ve heard of the YWCA, its most likely because of our swimming lessons; we’ve earned the title “best swim lessons in town”. We teach every child at their own level, with small class sizes and professional instructors (some who have been with the YWCA for over 30 years!). Our focus is on the child; children have the opportunity to participate in positive, fun water activities that build physical and social skills while learning swimming fundamentals and feeling safe in and around water. We believe creating a happy swimmer is a gift that lasts a lifetime. We offer a variety of class times and levels as well as private lessons.

Our Childcare Center recently transitioned to a Reggio Emilia inspired style of learning which is child led, community focused childcare. Children ages 6 weeks to 4 years (including our 4K classroom) participate in activities involving exploration and discovery that explore their interest, senses and spark questions. An example of an activity is making the alphabet using objects found in nature during a walk. Each child also receives a weekly swim lesson and play swim included in their enrollment. You can usually find one or more of the classes upstairs enjoying our rooftop playground, which has quickly become a favorite play area for all. Our Childcare Center offers before and after-school care as well as summer programs.

Last, but not least, is our Women’s Empowerment Center. The Empowerment Center was created as a place for women to come and learn skills to better their and their families’ lives. A variety of programs, classes and workshops are offered throughout the year designed to help women build self-confidence and develop job and life skills for personal and professional growth. It’s also home to the Women’s Career Closet. With over 2,000 visits per year, the closet provides work and interview appropriate clothing for low income women who are seeking employment, starting a new job or going to school. The goal is to prepare women for employment and boost self-esteem by helping them dress for success. The closet is made possible by donations from the community and local businesses. All clothes are given out free of charge.

These are just a few highlights of the YWCA. I invite you and your family to come check us out at 230 S Madison Street in Green Bay. Or feel free to give me a call with any questions at 920-432-5581…just ask for Alyssa Matelski. I hope to see you soon!


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