The Grade 5 Action Pass gives all grade 5 students in Durham Region free access to public swimming, public skating; and other programs, such as soccer and squash. The pass can be used throughout the summer until the end of August.
According to the 2012 to 2015 Ontario Student Drug Use and Health Survey, only 30 per cent of elementary school students and 20 per cent of secondary school students in Durham Region met the daily physical activity guidelines of 60-minutes a day of physical activity. Additionally, sedentary behaviour and increased screen time is on the rise in children and youth throughout Durham Region, as 49 per cent of elementary school students and 61 per cent of secondary school students exceed the recommended screen time limit of no more than two hours per day.
“If we can provide opportunities for young children to be active with their friends, turn off the screens, and promote positive experiences, while being physically active, this may help to foster physically active behaviours that students can continue throughout their life span,” said Georgette Chambers, a public health nurse with Durham Region Health Department.
In an effort to get children active, Durham Region Health Department has partnered with recreation centres to offer free programs through the Grade 5 Action Pass. Participating recreation centres include the Oshawa Civic Recreation Centre, Abilities Centre in Whitby, Audley Recreation Centre in Ajax, Durham College/UOIT Campus Ice Centre in Oshawa, and many others. For a complete list of participating recreation centres, visit durham.ca/physicalactivity.
Grade 5 students can obtain their pass by visiting local municipal recreation centres, or the Durham Family YMCA, 99 Mary St. N., Oshawa. Proof of address and date of birth must be provided. Students registering in the townships of Uxbridge and Scugog must also bring a current, one by one and a half inch size, photograph of themselves to obtain the pass. Students in Brock Township will have received their pass at school.
“Don’t miss out on this opportunity to enjoy free activities this summer,” Ms. Chambers added. “Let’s all encourage children to turn off screens and be physically active.”
For more information about the Grade 5 Action Pass, please call the Durham Health Connection, at 905-666-6241 or 1-800-841-2729, or visit durham.ca/physicalactivity.