Community programs kick off as Columbus City Schools let out for summer

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The kick off of summer break started Thursday for Columbus City Schools and as more kids are home for the summer parents are looking for ways to keep their kids active and stay out of trouble this summer.

Derrick Lewis is a father who thinks summer programs for kids are important.

“I think that’s one of the greatest concerns that we have as parents is putting our kids in something constructive during the summer,” he said.

With the start of summer, the YMCA says they have a great safe place for kids to enjoy for free.

Aja Mays is the YMCA Youth Development Director for the Eldon and Elsie Ward Family YMCA.

“With all the crime that is going on in the community and just on a daily basis they can come here not be judged, not be forced to do anything that they don’t want to do and be away from the drugs and the violence that may be pursuing outside,” she said.

YMCA summer camps including activities like basketball foundation classes, learning how to play sports, a fitness area, playground and kids can also take gardening classes.

Shaquan Coston, 11, loves coming to the Y to swim.

“It helps you stay out of trouble and if there’s no pools close to your house you can come here and there’s a lot of grown ups here and they watch you,” he said.

The Boys and Girls Clubs of Columbus are offering programs to kids 6-18 that includes free lunches each day.

As a father, Derrick Lewis is happy so many program are being offered.

“I think at the end of the summer you’ll be able to see something that you can pinpoint on how it helped kids,” he said. “I think it’s wonderful.”

This week, Columbus City Mayor Andrew J. Ginther announced a new website listing summer activities including COTA offering bus fairs for $2 to ride to the zoo where admission there is $3 for the youth to enjoy this summer. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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