Project Description:”R U Active?”
The event we are proposing is called “R U Active?” which was created and planned by Clarissa Gould, Brian Guzman, and Sarah Lawrence. This will be a day long event held at Rider University for the children in the Boys and Girls Club to participate in sport related activities to encourage them to get active. Members of Rider University’s various sport teams and other student volunteers will help in running this event that day. They will also serve as mentors for the children who may not have a strong source of positive influences in their life at the moment. It will not cost The Boys and Girls Club of Trenton and Mercer County anything to take part in due to the supplies that can be provided by Rider. Also to help raise money for The Boys and Girls Club, we will be charging $5 for volunteers to participate. This event will hopefully inspire children to resort to more positive activities instead of gang violence.
“R U Active?” is an event we would like to host in the spring at Rider University. The day would begin at a reasonable time set by the Boys and Girls Club. We would prefer the event to be held after school so that the children will continue to do activities we have set up after school on their own. By transportation provided by Rider or the Boys and Girls Club, the children will arrive on the Lawrenceville campus and go to The Student Recreation Center (SRC). There the children will enter our school’s gymnasium where they will meet the Rider Student volunteers of the event. Each person will introduce themselves and if they are an athlete the sport they are involved in will be introduced too.
After the introductions, a brief explanation of what the event is about will be given to the participators. Here we will announce the goals of this event so that the children will be aware of the significance of this ‘get active” day. We will announce that “R U Active?” was created to inspire kids to get active and this day will provide them with mentors that they can connect to. After the introductions are done, the active sessions begin. All the kids will spread out in the gym and start some stretching exercises. This will be led by the volunteers who will instruct them to do “jumping jacks,” touching their toes and other loosening up the body type of exercises. It’s important to stress to the children that warming up before playing is important because there is a chance of straining your body if warming up is not done. This warm up will be catered to the ages of the children and will be easy for them to do and remember.
2. Active Time
Next, the members of the boys and Girls Club will be divided up into different age groups. This will prevent older more advance members from playing with the younger children. Depending on the number of children participating, there will be age groups of 3-5, 6-9, 10-13 and 14+. Our volunteers will help in dividing up the group. Most of the games that will be played will be manageable to all age groups however some may be too advanced for the younger children.
Each Rider sport will have its own station for play. We are anticipating our school’s men and women’s Basketball, Soccer, Tennis, Track & Field, Volleyball, and Frisbee teams to come. Members of each team will either teach the children a skill needed in playing the sport and/or run a fun game that highlights the aspect of the sport. Some game ideas are as followed:
We have devised a shooting contest for the children 10 and up using the gym’s basketball hoops. For children under 10, hula-hoops will be used in order to adjust to their height. The children will complete against each other for a prize provided by our school.
A mini soccer game can be played with some of the older children however we are suggesting focusing on the different aspects of soccer. Members of our soccer team will teach the children the correct way to kick a soccer ball. Then they can get into a targeting practice exercise, trying to aim at a marking on the wall. Also the soccer team will teach them about being a goalie and how to block. This will lead into a game where the children try to defeat the soccer team’s goalie.
Due to the age group of the children and probable lack of space, an actual tennis game will not be played. However the children will learn about badminton which will be played using the volleyball nets. Right outside of the SRC some of the older children can partake in a table tennis match if there are not enough badminton nets available.
Track & Field:
The SRC has an indoor track where the children can play most of the track games. Batons will be provided for one of the races for the older children. A relay race will be conducted for the younger children who will break up into groups to race each other for prizes.
Members of the volleyball team will first teach the children how to spike and the correct way to hit the ball using demonstrations. Then a volleyball game for all the Boys and Girls Club members will be played using a beach ball instead of a regular volleyball due to the heaviness of a volley ball for younger children.
Frisbee can be played as an outdoor activity for our event on the Rider University Campus Mall outside of the SRC. Our school has its own Ultimate Frisbee Club and we are sure members of this club would love to advertise the sport of Frisbee on this day.
3. Break Time
After a much active day of sport activities, a period of break and relaxing time will follow. Here we will distribute out water and healthy snacks for the children to replenish them. After every session of getting active, the person should set aside a meal time to prevent dehydration and undernourishment. This statement will be made clear by the volunteers in order to promote healthy choices for the children. Water and snacks will be provided by Rider University.
At this point, we will gather the children all together to conclude our event. We will announce once again the purpose of this day and persuade the children to continue being active on their own. We will also be giving out pins or ribbons with the “R U Active?” logo on them. The student volunteers and athletes will again state their names along with some encouraging words of advice for the children. Goodbyes are then said and the children will board the buses and depart Rider University on the evening.
“R U Active?” may be a one day event but its objectives are likely to be long lasting for the children in The Boys and Girls Club. Our set goals we hope to accomplish during this event have been developed from combining the mission statement of The Boys and Girls Club with our team's personal experience with the pressures of childhood and adolescent. The first objective of “R U Active?” is to promote a positive, healthy and fun learning environment. Many of the young members of the Boys and Girls club do not live in environments such as these. By hosting this event at Rider University we are placing these children in a safe environment that allows them to have fun without the risk of danger. Also our event will be held in our own Student Recreation Center of which a gym can be provided for us. Mats can be provided to make certain activities more comfortable and mentors volunteering in this event will prevent rough-housing and ensure every child is playing in a nice respectable way.
Our second objective of “R U Active?” is providing mentoring relationships for the Boys and Girls Club members. This is done through the activities that will be set up for the children. Each activity will center on a Rider sport and members of that Rider sports team will be directing the game. A one-on-one relationship is established through these partnerships between child and active college student. This will hopefully allow the children to accept them as beneficial role models and permit the children to follow in many of the Rider volunteers’ footsteps. The numbers of positive influences in children lives are constantly decreasing but our event plans on raising them.