Transforming Communities Outreach (TCO) presented its health and fitness initiative entitled “Going Toe to Toe On Health and Fitness” to approximately 55 youth and parents at Atonement Covenant Church in Chicago, IL.
Over two days, elementary school students, parents, and members and volunteers of the church participated in talks on healthy eating. They then prepared chicken wraps, cutie smoothies, turkey sliders, and low calorie ice cream smoothies. They were also introduced to a series of boot camp exercises, basic boxing and self defense techniques with a local trainer and his assistants. Students were evaluated by trainers on effort, improvement and their readiness to participate. Prizes of 1st and 2nd place were awarded.
Pastor Karen Brewer shared that this program was an intergenerational experience, bringing grandparents and grandchildren together in shared ministry. She also received these comments from participants:
- “I just wanted to say thank you, my kids had such a great time.”
- “It is wonderful to see the children so excited, and I’m glad I didn’t miss this.”
- “So what time should the kids be there this week? We know this program can’t be over already!”
Atonement is in the process of putting together a team to look at how they can continue the health and fitness program for the youth. The next event by TCO will be held in March 2012 at Oakdale Covenant Church. All of these health and fitness activities are being presented because of a very generous grant donation from Covenant Children’s Ministries (Princeton, IL) and the collaborative efforts of many churches and volunteers to Transforming Communities Outreach. The grant is geared specifically for ministry with “at risk” youth.
Submitted by: Debbie Griffith-Samuels, Central Conference Office, Chicago, Illinois