LEWISTON — The YWCA of Central Maine recently finished the first Girls on the Run Program to be offered at the facility.

Girls on the Run is a national experiential learning program for girls in grades three through five. Although its perceived goal is completion of a noncompetitive 5k walk/run, in fact it is as much about good health, friendship, positive body image and self-esteem as it is about running.

The program was designed to help 8- to 11-year-old girls before they encounter what Molly Barker, the founder of GOTR, calls the “girl box,” that place where society, peers and parents inadvertently direct so many girls, a place where they think they are judged on a superficial level only.

The YWCA of Central Maine had eight participants for the first season and will accept applications for the fall season shortly. For more information on the Girls on the Run program offered, contact Kayt DeMerchant, Girls on the Run coach and director of marketing and hallmark programming, at 795-4050 or [email protected]

For more information on the YWCA of Central Maine, visit www.YWCAMaine.org.

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