Summer programs for kids

by Ruth Ploeger & Kimberly Grant
CYS Europe & 86 FSS

Keep your child’s summer fun with programs available through Army Child, Youth and School Services and Force Support Squadron Youth Services!

CYS programs

Army Child, Youth and School (CYS) Services School Age Center Summer Camps: Don’t spend your summer hearing, “Mom, I’m bored!” Day camps are offered for children grades 1 through 5 or 6, depending on local school configuration. These day camp experiences offer regular theme-based adventures, trips and activities that will keep children engaged and excited to return the next day. Options for full summer or select weeks may be available.

Middle School/Teen Summer Camps and Activities: Middle- and high-school students will have a blast throughout the summer. Regular trips and activities, as well as overnight excursions that provide fun experiences, are available to entertain youth with varied interests. Each week is a new adventure!

HIRED! is a workforce preparation and apprenticeship program that places youth ages 15-18 in positions with participating Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) organizations. Teens learn about career fields such  as marketing, graphic design, sports management, education, food service, outdoor recreation and more. Students must qualify and space is limited. Positions through the summer and into the school year are available.

EDGE! offers opportunities for youth, grades 6-12 to experience, develop, grow and excel by participating in cutting-edge art, fitness, life skills and adventure activities.

Youth Sports: Get out and enjoy the great weather by participating in any of the many sporting options available to children and youth through CYS Services’ Youth Sports program. The program provides children ages 3-18 with a positive and enjoyable recreation experience. A variety of instructional clinics and sports are offered throughout the summer months. CYS Services will maintain a focus on providing sports and  fitness programs that are recreational, maximize participation, and concentrate on the practice and development of skill in a recreational environment.

SKIES Unlimited Instructional Classes for children and youth are available within the School of Life, School of Sports, School of Arts and School of Academics. Check with your local Parent Central Services office for details about classes offered in your area.

Parent Fun: Parent Night Out and Day Out are opportunities for parents to leave their little ones in the care of CYS Services while they enjoy some adult time without the kids. These special events are offered every so often and slots fill fast.

Kids On Site: Child care can be provided for your unit/organizational event at the same location as the event. Care for children 6 weeks-12 years is available. Register and get more information for the above options at your local Parent Central Services.

Not all programs are available at every location. Links to application forms and your local Parent Central Services webpage can be found at

Get Ready for Back to School: As you prepare for summer to end, don’t forget to contact your local Army School Liaison Officer (SLO) for information, referrals and assistance with questions or concerns about schools and dependent education, including Department of Defense Dependent Schools, private schools and homeschooling. Youth sponsors are also available to assist newcomers. Your child can practice academic skills on the Learning Links section of the SLO webpage! It’s not too early to prepare for a great school year! Find your installation School Liaison Officer and local SLO webpage.

FSS programs

Air Force Force Support Squadron (FSS) Youth Programs FSS Youth Programs are comprised of school-age centers, sports, teen and youth centers, and instructional programs. Youth programs are affiliated with the Boys and Girls Clubs of America and 4-H; their curricula are combined with mandatory Department of Defense programming to enhance social, cultural, educational and creative abilities of young family members. Youth programs vary by installation and provide opportunities to explore, learn, play and just have fun during summer and the school year.

School-Age Programs offer before- and after-school care, as well as winter, spring and summer camps for children 5-12 years of age enrolled in school.

Youth Centers have summer trips, clubs and camps for youth ages 9-12. These centers have extended hours during summer and feature recreational programs.

Teen Centers provide leadership development, employment skills and service opportunities for youth ages 13 to 18. Onsite entertainment includes ping-pong, pool, television and video games. Events range from lock-ins and socials to dance contests and comedy shows. Organized clubs range from “Passport to Manhood,” and “Smart Girls” to Keystone.

The Youth Employment Skills (YES) program is available for dependents of active-duty personnel and allows high school students to learn job skills and earn money.

Youth Sports: Encourage teamwork and personal fitness by enrolling your youngest family members in basketball, soccer, volleyball and more. Youth Instructional Programs allow children to meet others with common hobbies while learning new skills. Instruction may be available for dance, gymnastics, cheerleading, martial arts, theater and a variety of musical instruments. Summer instructional camps cater to various age groups and interests.

For more information and to register, visit your installation’s FSS website. Living in the Kaiserslautern Military Community? Go to Those in living in the Aviano area can visit For the UK, visit the Lakenheath FSS and Mildenhall FSS

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