The Arlington Public Library maintains a comprehensive stock of fiction and nonfiction reading materials through a network that consists of a central library and six branch libraries. Residents receive free access to borrow these materials and can use the onsite databases for research. The library also sponsors a variety of programs including public-speaking and Microsoft Excel lessons for adults, story-time sessions for preschoolers, a free-book program for new mothers to read to their children, and a Books on Wheels program that connects homebound and isolated seniors to the community.
Arlington Life Shelter helps local individuals and families transition from homelessness with short-term shelter and support services. For 25 years, it has provided fresh beds, clean showers, and hearty meals for anyone seeking refuge from extreme weather or a night on the street, or looking for a way to gain employment and attain long-term self-sufficiency. The shelter offers 72-hour services for people who are just looking for a place to sleep and 14-day services for people who cannot work due to disability or age. For residents looking to gain stable employment, the 9- to 12-week rehabilitative program includes educational classes for children and adults, as well as job-coaching sessions to prepare for interviews and new jobs. Volunteers teach a range of skills, including classes in computer skills, parenting, and yoga. Residents can also take part in health and social-work services and access resources to help them move into transitional housing as they work toward self-sufficiency.
As part of its mission to help men, women, and children develop healthy minds, bodies, and spirits, the YMCA of Arlington provides a wide array of fitness and well-being programs as well as family-oriented activities. The organization also serves as the city’s largest provider of childcare. During its 52 years in Arlington, the Y has expanded to include three branches, and in 2011 alone, it provided more than $80,000 in scholarships to help children attend its summer day camp.
When Billy Corbett was still in high school in the late 1970s, he wrote letters to personal trainers in Hollywood, asking their advice on how he could become one too. Some of the trainers wrote back, giving him advice that he still remembers and utilizes today as head of Billy Corbett's RetroFit. There, he and his team of instructors lead groups through high-energy boot camps and personal-training sessions catered to individual goals. They also guide young people toward a healthy lifestyle with youth sports-conditioning classes.
Melanie has been active in the health community—as a fitness consultant, personal training, and yoga and Pilates teacher—for more than 14 years. But it wasn’t until she discovered pole fitness while mining that she was able to combine all her passions into one activity. As she started experimenting with pole fitness, she felt her experience with yoga, Pilates, and fitness classes coming together into one comprehensive workout. She knew that with her background in health and fitness, and passion for pole fitness, she would be able to help students achieve their fitness goals. And so PoleFIT Revolution was born. Today, she and a team of instructors teach a variety of classes, such as pole fitness, aerial yoga, boot camp, and stretching classes to ensure all students are receiving the workout that best suits their body.
The Tarrant County Back to School Roundup, presented by Walmart, is an annual volunteer-run event that supports underserved children with free school supplies, immunizations, haircuts, and health and dental screenings. Prekindergarteners through 12th graders whose families meet federal poverty income guidelines gather on August 8 at the Will Rogers Memorial Center in Fort Worth. Amid kids activities, games, and interactive booths, approximately 10,000 students are expected to receive free school supplies. Alongside supplies distributors, community-resource booths hand out information on topics such as literacy, parenting, nutrition, and financial literacy to help foster solid family life. Last year, the Back to School Roundup provided school supplies and services to 11,000 children in need.