TORONTO, March 5, 2012 /CNW/ - With obesity rates on the rise, more than 2,000 people in the GTA participated in the YMCA Megathon fundraising event on Saturday to raise money so more kids can access physical recreation. The ultimate fitness challenge took place at eight YMCA's across the GTA, where community superheroes raised $193,314 for the YMCA Strong Kids Campaign. These funds will give 474 kids access to the YMCA for a year.
"The impact this will have for children and youth in our communities is incredible," said Linton Carter, VP Community Philanthropy, YMCA of Greater Toronto. "Thanks to the overwhelming support of the community and our Y members, we surpassed our goal of $150,000. We are thrilled that now we will be able to help more kids build healthy habits early in life and hopefully avoid developing chronic diseases associated with obesity."
The second annual YMCA Megathon took place at eight YMCA centres in the GTA, and invited participants to take part in "mega" physical exercises to challenge themselves physically and to step up socially to be a hero for the youth in the GTA. With each centre tailoring events to their community, they offered a mix of activities including a 24-hour swim-a-thon, karaoke cycle-a-thon and chocolate yoga. One Y member, Theresa Dugwell, beat the world record for running 93 km on a treadmill in 12 hours.
As a charity focused on community support, the YMCA has a unique role to play in the healthy development of children. The YMCA Megathon provides a fun outlet to raise awareness and get the community active while also highlighting the importance of developing healthy habits at any age.
About the YMCA of Greater Toronto
Established in 1853, The YMCA of Greater Toronto is a charity connecting with more than 542,000 people at 425 locations. Serving the population of the GTA, Durham, Peel, York, Halton Regions and Dufferin County, the YMCA works to build strong kids, families and communities. The YMCA, in partnership with more than 250 organizations, offers a variety of programs responding to the needs of the community, including employment, education, newcomer programs, youth outreach and intervention, fitness and recreation, child care and camps. www.ymcagta.org
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For more information about developing healthy habits visit www.yhealthyhabits.org or call Amie Zimon at 647-588-6800.