Youth Development – Missoula YMCA


From age six months on, kids need to be cared for when their parents are busy elsewhere. They need to grow. They need to move around and laugh and learn and play.

They need to learn specific things like freestyle swimming and safe diving; they need to know general life things like caring, honesty, respect and responsibility.

They want to expand their artistic and athletic possibilities. Sometimes, they just need a place to hang out and be safe and relax with friends. This is true of preschoolers and of teens.

Missoula YMCAFor decades our Y has been successfully serving children and youth and this experience and continued dedication to their development is what guides our program development.

At the Y, a six-month-old can learn to not be afraid of the swimming pool, the young child can learn proper stroke technique and the older kid or teen can compete statewide on the swim team.

School-age kids can learn to dribble and shoot a basketball, kick a soccer ball and run, throw a ball and catch it in the net of a lacrosse stick; and they can compete on leagues.

Y kids study Tae Kwon Do and gymnastics. They learn proper weight lifting techniques that will help them in any athletic activity they choose. They challenge themselves on the rock wall—and succeed—and they perform in musical groups. Teens do all this, plus they can learn work-related skills such as camp counselor training and Red Cross lifeguard certification.

It’s truly amazing how these kids can grow.


What fun is a summer vacation if it’s not at a Y summer camp?  Delight in adventures and sports all summer long at the Y!  Missoula kids have been growing and thriving in Y camps for years, while making good friends and undertaking new opportunities to boot.

These adventures are based out of the YMCA, but also reach out to local area parks, playfields and attractions.  With so much excitement abounding all day long, kids return home to their families tuckered out after a full day of laughing, running, playing and learning.

There are a multitude of camps to choose from, including adventure camps and sports camps.  Your children get the opportunity to improve their skills in fishing, rock climbing, even building rockets and learning about astronauts in Mission to Mars camp.  Kicking balls around the field, learning music, dance, and art are regular occurrences.

Camps are on hand by the week in half-days or all-day formats.  Our licensed Camp Imagination is offered by the month.  Families have come to depend on camps for the amazing care they provide for their school-age children all day during the warm summer months while parents attend to their adult responsibilities.  Camps are also great for kids to expand their friend circles and have a change of pace with exposure to new adventures, sports and skills.  Don’t miss out on all this summer fun!  Boisterous good fun and merry recreation waits!

2015-08-18_0854Discovery Programs

Small children don’t miss out on the jolly good times at the Y either, in our Discovery Programs they have a blast learning and growing.  Kiddos have positive encounters working as a group learning new skills and sports.  These assemblages of youngsters participating in amusing activities promote cooperation, collaboration, and learning motor skills, teamwork, and lifelong lessons of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility.  The Y offers artistic and athletic endeavors for kids to choose from, from ages six months and up.  The task of promoting discovery, growth, and having fun is in good hands through the Y’s diverting Discovery Programs. Watch your child’s knowledge blossom as they participate in a wide array of activities; from swimming to music to sports, we are committed to expanding every child’s experience in a positive and fun way.


The Y Afterschool Club is a fantastic place for kids to be in a fun, structured, and healthy environment.  Children are divided into groups based on their age and school, and transported from school to one of our Afterschool locations.  They are bestowed with nourishing snacks, homework help, and at the minimum thirty minutes of playful and amusing aerobic activity.  Activities also abound, in the form of arts and crafts, science experiments, field trips, special guests, swimming, and more!  Pre-registration is required, and the schools served by this program include Chief Charlo, Cold Springs, Franklin, Hawthorne, Hellgate, Lewis & Clark, Lowell, Paxson, Rattlesnake, and Russell schools.
Learn more about After School Programs at the Missoula Family YMCA.