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YMCA Bucks County reports results of RISE community outreach program


rise(Bucks County, PA , January 28 , 2021) - YMCA of Bucks County recently released the results of RISE, their free community motivational program, intentionally designed to promote positivity and connection as Bucks County residents continue to face isolation and vulnerability throughout the pandemic. 

The program ran for six weeks, November 30 through January 10, and provided over 600 registered residents of Bucks County with opportunities to ‘RISE’ above social isolation, negative thinking and poor health habits into feeling happier, healthier and strong. The program was provided free to residents, age 13+ in Bucks County.

One of the more popular aspects of the program was a Facebook group for the registered members which involved daily discussion topics encouraging interaction between participants and RISE coaches. Discussions varied and included topics designed around motivation, personal growth and reflection. 

In one of the most engaged-with posts early in the program, participants were provided with a video clip from the animated Disney movie “The Lion King” that included the scene when Simba hears his father Mufasa repeatedly saying, “remember who you are.” Group participants reflected on a series of questions about how they viewed themselves and who they are. The post garnered over sixty replies, with many reflecting on the toll that the pandemic has taken on them personally and the goal to become one's best self.  

“I felt like my best self at the start of 2020. I was my healthiest and happiest. This was before corona...before quarantine... and before my last relationship. Now I’m learning to grow and form even more into the person I’m supposed to be. Hardship can shape us and make us resilient,” said one participant in reflecting on the video and questions. 

“I’m trying to remember who I am...it’s been a rough year for us all. I lose sight of myself often, as I become so involved in the suffering of others,” said another. 

In each case, RISE coaches and fellow participants answered and validated the thoughts and feelings of those posting. 

"So many residents know and respect YMCA of Bucks County for our wellness programs and services,” said Trish Feinthel, Chief Operations Officer of YMCA of Bucks County. “Through RISE, our coaches and staff wanted to remind everyone that wellness is not just in body, but in spirit and mind too. Together, we are stronger." 

The RISE program was funded in part by Operation Compassion, a campaign created by the Y at the onset of the pandemic, to fund vital programs that would benefit the community. Through Operation Compassion, the Y continues to evaluate and serve community needs including food insecurity, showers for the homeless and financial assistance for those in need of child care. 

YMCA of Bucks County is a charitable, nonprofit organization committed to strengthening communities through membership and programs that foster youth development, healthy living and social responsibility for all. Annually, the Y serves nearly 60,600 members and participants at its five member branches, six youth education centers, and eight camp locations across Bucks County. YMCA of Bucks County provides $5 million of community impact annually in the form of financial assistance to individuals and families in need and free programming for veterans, cancer survivors, older adults and more. To learn more visit ymcabucks.org.