PHILADELPHIA PA – Deployed members of the U.S. armed services and their families will continue to receive free memberships to local YMCA branches – including those in Pottstown, Royersford, Boyertown, New Hanover, and Phoenixville – under an extension of the Philadelphia Freedom Valley YMCA‘s military outreach initiative, it announced Thursday (May 1, 2014).
The program, which was scheduled to end this year, has been extended to March 2015, according a Freedom Valley press release. Its goal is to ensure that every eligible service member and their families has access to extra support during periods of deployment and family separation.
“The YMCA memberships provide a way to relieve stress and stay physically healthy through recreational fitness activities, while respite child care provides support for those who are acting as a single parent during periods of deployment,” its press release said. Free memberships for those affected have been available for about five years, it added.
Nationwide, the initiative has provided no-cost YMCA memberships to more than 60,000 military families, including 112,000 children of military personnel.
The Philadelphia Freedom Valley YMCA serves more than 140,000 members and 200,000 individuals a
year across 17 branches.