AUGUSTA — The Kennebec Valley YMCA is launching its first Strong Kids Month in September to raise awareness and funds for its annual campaign.

Every year, the KV YMCA strives to raise more than $200,000 through its Strong Kids Annual Campaign to ensure everyone in the Kennebec Valley region has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. The association provides scholarships to vital Y community programs and resources that support youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, according to a news release from Andrea Lowell of the KV YMCA.

The association works to support the people and neighborhoods that need it most by addressing community issues, such as chronic disease prevention programs, cancer recovery support groups, healthy lifestyle education and fitness programs, pediatric referrals, water safety, youth recreation, child care, literacy gaps and school readiness.

“Throughout Kennebec Valley, everybody knows the KVYMCA as simply “the Y”. But there’s so much more to our Y than one might think,” said Harry Lanphear, board president at the KV YMCA, according to the release. “The Y is more than a gym, we’re a non-profit charity. As a charity, we’re dedicated to nurturing the potential of every kid, teen, adult and senior. We continuously strive to improve our community’s health and well-being, as well as giving back and providing support to our neighbors.”

This year, to support the needs of the Kennebec Valley region, the association hopes to raise $250,000. Funds raised will support more than 1,000 program and membership scholarships in 2018 through its Open Doors Financial Aid program.

The following Strong Kids Month events are planned: a shopping fundraiser at Charming Charlie, Sept. 2 and 3; The KVYMCA Plank Challenge on Facebook, Sept. 6; Giving Day and the Rise ‘N Shine Road Race, Sept. 22; and a photo contest all month. Visit kvymca.org for event details.

For more information, contact Andrea Lowell at 622-YMCA or [email protected], or to make a donatation, visit kvymca.org/donate-now-2/.