Boston University is teaming with the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) and the Boston Centers for Youth & Family (BCYF) to launch the Boston University Health, Fitness and Wellness Program in the South End Blackstone Community Center, which is expected to be finished by early 2013, according to BU Today.
The partnership was born after the parties joined in the city’s initiative to bring free and low-cost fitness and wellness programs to at-risk communities. Boston University will invest $1.25 million during the next five years to the programs to provide more access and wellness programs in a renovated section of the Blackstone Community Center. The $1.25 million will also help fund 100 summer camp scholarships for area youth and the donation of two hours of ice time each week for the Allston-Brighton Youth Hockey league at the university's Walter Brown Arena this fall.
The 2,000-square-foot Blackstone Community Center will be renovated to include a personal training space and up to 25 pieces of equipment. Staff and student employees from the university's college of health and rehabilitation sciences will supervise and train the BCYF staff. Other colleges at the university will also volunteer at the center, including the schools of medicine, public health, social work and the department of physical education, recreation and dance.
"We are so excited about the new fitness center that will be built here at the BCYF Blackstone Community Center," says Daphne Griffin, chief of human services for the City of Boston and executive director of Boston Centers for Youth & Families. "But, even more important to us than the equipment is the fitness training, nutrition counseling and wellness programming that will be incorporated into this new partnership. And best of all, the community will participate in shaping the programs that will be offered at the fitness centers."