Ethan Dolph, Ana Rubie, and Caitlyn Rolfe shared summer crafts in parks and neighborhoods throughout the Walla Walla Valley, thanks to your YWCA support.
After COVID crushed our 2020 plans, we were pretty excited about having the YWCA Fun Factory back.
However, this summer was hardly business as usual.
Several neighboring communities were experiencing virus resurgence that kept kids indoors. Here in Walla Walla, parks were emptier than usual with so many kids taking part in the important Walla Walla Public Schools accelerated learning program, Summer Sol.
While the numbers may not have been as high as previous years, it was great to be offering something for kids who might otherwise have slipped through the activity cracks.
Van driver Ethan Dolph said, “We knocked on doors and tacked up dozens of notes around some of our quieter stops. It was a really great feeling when after a couple of weeks of consistently showing up, we’d finally connect with the kids.”
Just when participation seemed to be gaining momentum, the team had a new challenge: Should they be trying to entice children outdoors in record-setting temperatures? Or on days with risky air quality?
They acquired spray bottles and added N95s to their masking options, and they gained special appreciation for the indoor stops.
Next year might not bring cooler temperatures or cleaner air (though we can always hope), but Ana, Caitlyn, and Ethan did come up with some new strategies and schedule adjustments to help 2022 be even more successful.