Strengthening Our Military Family® | Armed Services YMCA of Hampton Roads

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The Armed Services YMCA Operation Hero is a ten-week, afterschool enrichment program designed for military children in grades 2 through 5 and the unique challenges they face.

Each week, Operation Hero focuses on different topics using fun, engaging, and interactive lessons and activities. Topics include:

    • Identity and Self-esteem
    • Respect 
    • Responsibility 
    • Honesty and Integrity 
    • Feelings and Caring 
    • Friends and Family
    • Deployments and Family Separations 
    • Bullying Prevention 
    • Problem Solving and Teamwork 

This no-cost, after-school enrichment program is designed for military children. Military life provides so many opportunities and unique challenges.  We understand. Operation Hero was created specifically to support military kids. Through high-interest, interactive lessons, trained facilitators help students learn the importance of what their military parent does and the personal sacrifices they make to keep our country safe. While gaining a deeper understanding and respect for their parents’ demanding service, they come to realize their essential role in their military family.

Curriculum-based lessons and team-building activities with peers who share similar life experiences help to strengthen students’ character development, leadership skills and increase their resilience enabling them to reach their full potential. The program helps students to manage their feelings and conflicts and develop friendships while emphasizing respect, responsibilities, honesty, and problem-solving. Enhancing students’ academic performance, as well as encouraging greater self-esteem and positive interactions with peers and family are core objectives for Operation Hero.


"People need to stay positive a lot more because it helps all of us feel good about ourselves and each other. Everybody has a story and comes from a different place with different experiences. We need to be there for one another."

We are PROUD MILITARY children!

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This 8-Week virtual adaptation of our in-person program takes place in our Google Classroom. Virtual OP HERO pairs a caring adult mentor with a small group of school-aged students to foster connection and growth. Mentor-facilitated groups meet online each THURSDAY and FRIDAY AFTERNOON, 4:15-5:15 PM, for FUN and INTEREST-DRIVEN OpChats. Students will participate in conversation with friends, share their weekly activities/projects, play interactive games and have plenty of time for social connection.

Each week, our youngest heroes will work through different topics using engaging, and interactive lessons and activities:

WEEK ONE: Identity & Self-Esteem
WEEK TWO: Respect & Honor
WEEK THREE: Responsibility, Honesty & Integrity
WEEK FOUR: Empathy & Being a Good Friend
WEEK FIVE: Coping With Deployments, Change & Big Feelings
WEEK SIX: Bullying, Differences & Self-Acceptance
WEEK SEVEN: Problem Solving & Team Work
WEEK EIGHT: I Am an Op Hero!

This program is FREE and open to all ACTIVE-DUTY military dependents in grades 2-5 who have not previously participated in this program. You must submit an application to enroll.

Applications are currently being accepted for the Spring 2022 Virtual Operation Hero Session which begins on Monday, March 21, 2022. Just click the button below to join this session.

Register Today

**A special Operation Hero Graduation Ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, June 2, 5:00-6:00 PM, so families and friends may officially celebrate their Op Heroes and all of their accomplishments.**

HR2021_Op Hero Grad_collage_1

"Operation Hero has changed my son's life in such a short period of time. Being a part of Operation Hero has been a wonderful experience."




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