Parents are looking for creative ways to stay occupied at home and the Sylvan Adams community centre is now offering many options for every member of the family.
The centre in Cote des Neiges offers gym facilities and offers numerous programs for the city’s Jewish community, but it is open to people of all denominations. Whether you are 4 years old or 100, members can find something of interest, including physical actives like aquatics, yoga, karate or wrestling. It also offers sports and language camps for kids, as well as camps for youth with special needs.
Now that the facility is closed due to the pandemic, many of its fitness programs are offered online, via Zoom. Members can enjoy martial arts and Zumba classes and a complete virtual class schedule is available on its website. Workout videos by the centre’s fitness instructor are also available.
Sylvan Adams is also offering two free weekly virtual programs for families with children with special needs. The first session is hosted Wednesdays from 4:30 p.m to 5:30 p.m. by the Youth and Family Engagement department. This program is an information session for parents to help them with their kids while stuck at home. “We are focusing on different topics that include structuring your day with your child, using technology properly and how to take advantage of the online world that is being offered right now,” says Coordinator of Inclusion Services Melanie Rich. “We have a lot of parents experiencing hardships being home with their kids all day long and having to occupy a child, who normally has a very busy day.”
The second program is run by Rich and takes place Wednesdays from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. It is basically a virtual hangout session aimed for young adults, 16 years and over, who have special needs. During the session, the kids are encouraged to bring a snack, share stories and have a show and tell. They play games like MadLibs and have dance parties during each session.
Rich says many of these teens are used to socializing so it’s important they continue to see friends in a safe place. This virtual hangout draws approximately 20 kids per week. Rich says it is possible these sessions may become permanent, even as the centre reopens. The virtual hangout is open to any young adult with special needs over 16. No membership to the centre is required. To participate, parents should email at MRich@ymywha.com and she will send you a link to the Zoom chat.
For more information on the two free virtual programs, click here.
Sylvan Adams is located at 5400 Westbury Ave. For more information, visit ymywha.com