Railroad Street Youth Project, Berkshire South, and Monument Mountain launch “Spartan Strong” Initiative

GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — Railroad Street Youth Project (RSYP), the youth empowerment nonprofit organization serving young people in southern Berkshire County, announced today that its Mentoring Program is partnering with the Athletic Department at Monument Mountain Regional High School and Berkshire South Regional Community Center’s T.O.N.E. (Teen Outreach Nutrition Exercise) Program to launch a new collaborative effort: the Spartan Strong Initiative.

Youth and adults exercise together in a group setting at Berkshire South every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday during Spartan Strong from 3:15–4:30 pm for free; submitted photo.

Youth and adults exercise together in a group setting at Berkshire South every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday during Spartan Strong from 3:15–4:30 pm for free; submitted photo.

Spartan Strong encourages youth and adults to exercise together in a group setting at Berkshire South every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 3:15 – 4:30 pm for free. Each session begins with a chat and check-in about the day while the group stretches. Following this, the group engages in a high-intensity functional fitness workout and then finishes with weightlifting. Following the completion of the program, participants receive three-month memberships so they may continue exercising throughout the summer months.

The program was developed in response to a cluster of deaths among local young people in the last year, many of which involved drug and alcohol use and/or were suicides. The majority of these deaths involved young men in their twenties who had participated in sports while in high school and remained in the area after graduation. Spartan Strong pairs recent graduates/alumni of the area’s football teams with current players to keep each other engaged, motivated and connected.

“The best part of the program is watching these young people support one another and cheer each other on to successfully complete the work laid out in front of them,” says program facilitator and local functional fitness trainer Mairead Fogarty. “I love seeing them congratulate one another on their solid effort and holding each other accountable for quality performances.”

For more information, please contact Chris Tucci, Deputy Director at chris@rsyp.org or (413) 528-2475.

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