Summer 2014 Youth Recreation and Socialization

One of the primary reasons people participate in recreational activities is to socialize with others, which can result in tremendous benefits for overall well-being. Through recreation, people discover who they are as individuals and who they are as members of a group. They learn the give-and-take of relationships, appropriate manners and customs, and the skills necessary to make and keep friends. People also discover what gives them joy, passion, and meaning in life. Through recreation, people have new experiences, engage more fully in living, and develop healthy lifestyles.

Recreation is important for all ages, but it is especially crucial during children’s formative years. Socialization opportunities through recreation are needed to support their social-emotional maturity into healthy adulthood. Recreation, like any life skill, requires intentional instruction and support. Research has consistently indicated that physically and socially active recreation and leisure activities are related to a higher quality of life in the general population. Socially active recreation is also important to one’s health. In fact, friendships may be the hidden factor in greater longevity

There are both direct and indirect links between participation in group activity and social development. This is one of the major reasons why OSDPC supports education as the gateway to opportunities. Due to the generosity of a couple of medical professionals from Cambridge Health Alliance, OSDPC was able to provide a day of retreat for over 75 youths from the community on July 21. During the retreat, the youths started the day by eating breakfast and continued participating in recreational activities such as swimming, team building exercises. Later in the afternoon, several young ladies participated in an esthetics session and the day concluded with a performing arts presentation.