Haverhill Elite Cheer comes to the Haverhill YMCA

Sep. 30—HAVERHILL — The Haverhill YMCA has formed a new partnership with Haverhill Elite Cheer, a nonprofit athletic training and scholarship program.

Officials at the Y said this collaboration brings together two organizations committed to providing opportunities for children to stay active and engaged while achieving their goals.

"Joining forces to strengthen the community through programs that help children made perfect sense to the leadership teams at Haverhill Elite Cheer and the Y and the result is more quality youth programs for kids in Haverhill," said Tracy Fuller, regional executive director of the Haverhill YMCA. "We are thrilled to have this well established cheer program join our Y family."

Elite Cheer is a recreational cheerleading team that formed at the start of 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

The idea was to give area youths ages 5-18 an opportunity to learn and participate in a physically active sport outside of a school cheer program, make new friends and possibly gain enough skills to join a high school cheerleading team.

Elite Cheer operated out of a rented space in Groveland before its recent move to the Haverhill YMCA.

"It's now our home, our kids are all Y members, and all of the tuition goes to the YMCA as we are now a true community program," said Christin O'Brien, founder and director of Haverhill Elite Cheer. "Although we've merged with the Y, Haverhill Elite Cheer also has a football cheer program in partnership with Junior Hillies Football."

Fuller noted that working with Haverhill Elite Cheer to offer a welcoming, supportive, and fun environment for kids who are passionate about the sport of cheer further enhances the Y's mission and goal to broaden its reach and discover new and innovative ways to bring great programming to children and families in Haverhill.

"With the leadership and expertise of Christin O'Brien and her team, this cheer program will be a huge success at the Haverhill YMCA," Fuller said.

"We are excited to bring five teams to the YMCA and thrilled to offer at least two new teams starting in late October," O'Brien said. "This is clearly a sport our city needs and I am thankful to the YMCA for the opportunity to partner to benefit our families.

"It was a wonderful opportunity presented to our growing program as we were utilizing the beautiful gym space at the Y," O'Brien added. "Our mission and philosophy regarding children in our community having access to programs like cheer lined up clearly with one another."

Fuller said the Haverhill YMCA serves more than 3,000 members, providing vital programs including early education childcare, affordable housing, health and wellness programs, after school care, as well as summer camp for hundreds of children each summer. Additionally, the Y provides $750,000 in financial assistance each year so everyone has access to Y programs regardless of their ability to pay.

Visit Haverhill Elite Cheer online at www.haverhillelite.org.