If school is cancelled again due to snow, the YMCA of Marquette County may be able to help parents continue their work day stress free.

The Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Program, or HEPA, offers free before and after school programs.

HEPA is available onsite at Birchview Elementary in Ishpeming and Lakeview Elementary in Negaunee.  Parents can drop kids off before school starting at 7 a.m. and they can stay after school as late at 6 p.m.

Officials say the programs take the burden off of parents trying to get to work on time in the morning.  It also eliminates the need to rush in after work to pick the kids up.

“Parents are able to drop their children off and they don’t have to worry about how they are getting to school or where they are going to take their kids after school,” Food and Fun Program Director at the YMCA Courtney Russell said.  “Our programs for the rest of the year are free, we do have spaces left in each program but they are filling up fast.”

“It gives the parents a couple of hours after school where they don’t have to try and find daycare and they know their children are safe.”

There is also a program available at the Vandenboom School in Marquette for a nominal charge.

The HEPA program was made available by grants from the Michigan Grant Program and a Walmart Grant.