In response to requests from local LGBTQ+ youth to the Ann Arbor YMCA leadership team, the Ann Arbor Y will begin offering dedicated swim time for the LGBTQ+ community and their family and friends. The new program, “Out to Swim”, is being offered not only to provide a welcoming space with protection from discrimination, but also to create opportunities for people to meet and socialize with like-minded peers.
“At the Ann Arbor Y, we strive to ensure that everyone, regardless of age, race, gender, gender identity, gender expression, income, faith, sexual orientation or cultural background has the opportunity to live life to its fullest,” said Toni Kayumi, Ann Arbor YMCA President & CEO.
“When our leadership team was on a recent Zoom call with local LGBTQ+ youth representatives, we asked them what type of equity and inclusion programs they would like to see our Y deliver, and they suggested we offer a dedicated time for the LGBTQ+ community to swim. With the isolation that so many have experienced throughout the coronavirus crisis, it’s important for us to offer socially distanced in-person opportunities for people of all ages to connect, while simultaneously following CDC, state and local health department guidelines.”
Swimming is an excellent means of physical activity, and particularly for the trans community where increased physical fitness can improve health before and after surgery. Physical activity can also improve mental health and well-being by building confidence, increasing self-esteem, and providing an opportunity for like-minded individuals to meet and socialize.
- When: Fridays, beginning Nov. 6
- Time: 7:30-8:30 p.m.
- Where: Ann Arbor YMCA (400 West Washington Street) – Aquatics Center
- Fees and Registration: Free for Y members, $50 for community members (per 6-week session). Registration and program information available at www.annarborymca.org/register.
Financial assistance is available for YMCA memberships and the “Out To Swim” program.