The South Boston/Halifax County YMCA is partnering again to offer the Girls on the Run and Heart and Sole programs this spring in the community.

The program began in Halifax County last fall and is expanding to offer two programs to extend the impact to both elementary and middle school age girls. Girls on the Run teaches self-awareness, healthy relationships, and celebrating others for third-fifth grade girls.

Heart + Sole is the team for sixth-eighth grade girls, teaching the whole health of the girl — body, brain, heart, spirit and relationships.

Girls on the Run is a nonprofit girls empowerment program that teaches life skills through discussions, activities and running games. Meeting in small teams with trained volunteer coaches — girls build social, emotional and physical skills while learning healthy habits for life.

The combination of the research-based curriculum, trained coaches and a commitment to serve all girls is what sets Girls on the Run apart from other after-school activities. A recent independent study led by Dr. Maureen Weiss, an expert in positive youth development, showed that 97% of Girls on the Run participants learned critical life skills including resolving conflict, helping others and intentional decision-making. The curriculum includes three parts: valuing ourselves, establishing healthy relationships and connect with the community at large.

Modifications have been made to the program to adhere to social distance guidelines, minimize exposure and follow COVID-19 safety policies. The Girls on the Run Program will be meeting from 5:30 p.m. to 7 Mondays and Wednesdays at the high school track.

The eight-week season will run from March 8 to May 7 with the 5K Event Celebration held on Saturday, May 8.

Registration is open now until full. The size of each team is a maximum of 15 girls.

To register for Girls on the Run, visit www.girlsontheruncenva.org or call 434-528-3767.

Fees are based on a sliding scale and scholarships are available. No girl is ever turned away due to financial reasons.

For more information, contact Kristen Zerbato, YMCA executive director, at kzerbato@ymcashr.org or 343-572-8909.