Sent on March 23, 2020
For over 168 years, the YMCA of Metropolitan Washington has supported our community as a leader in youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility. During your time as a YMCA member, you may have accessed our full service facilities for physical activity, improved health, and time with friends; trusted our staff with your child’s care and development at Y program centers; and participated in swim instruction, tennis clinics, day camp, cooking classes, and more, at YMCA locations across the region.
As of 5 p.m. on Monday, March 16, 2020; in compliance with the requests of health and government officials, we suspended operations at YMCA wellness facilities and program centers. These closures were instituted to help prevent the further spread of COVID-19 and protect those most vulnerable in our communities.
To be direct: the YMCA is a nonprofit charity. We rely on membership dues and donations to support the majority of the work we do. Without your ongoing support as a member, the Y may cease to exist. This will leave a critical gap in services across the metropolitan region. We ask for your ongoing investment in the Y and respectfully request that you retain your membership during this difficult period. All membership payments made while the YMCA is closed will be recognized as tax-deductible charitable contributions to the YMCA. Members that continue to support the YMCA in this way will receive a letter acknowledging their contribution at year-end to be used for tax purposes.
Many of you have called us and asked how you can help to support Y staff at this time. The Y launched an Acts of Kindness/COVID-19 Fund, which supports our ability to support Y staff through your kind and generous donations. To donate, please https://www.ymcadc.org/acts-of-kindness/.
We are cleaning and refurbishing our facilities while they are closed (to help reopen them as soon as government officials permit and health organizations support that it is safe to do so); and our staff are working hard to provide emergency support to those who need us most during this unprecedented time:
- Free meals are being provided to children at our YMCA branches and program centers. These meals are available to any child in the community, regardless of whether or not they are part of Y programs.
- Free groceries and food donations are being collected and provided to anyone in need across each community we serve.
- We are exploring ways to offer childcare support for essential service providers, such as community First Responders and hospital employees, so that they may continue to serve and care for the sick in our communities.
- In partnership with the Red Cross, our staff and facilities are supporting blood drives across the Metropolitan Washington area to address the current shortage of blood supplies in our local hospitals.
- We continue to support our Fit and Well Seniors by providing them with virtual options to stay healthy, active, and connected in their homes.
- YMCA Youth and Family Services continue to support young adults through our Youth Intervention Services. Our dedicated teams are communicating directly with youth and their families to provide help needed.
- We are coordinating volunteer support to help those in need in our area.
For more information, and to join our efforts, please visit: www.ymcadc.org/stayinformed. If you have questions, need support, would like to help, or would like to talk with us, email [email protected] or call your YMCA branch.
We have made a wide range of virtual services available online at www.ymcadc.org/virtual-YMCA. New content will be added to this site each week, so please stay active, healthy, engaged, and connected with us online. Utilize this opportunity to remain close with your friends and staff at the Y by participating virtually to observe distant socializing.
We will continue to communicate with you regarding when we will reopen YMCA facilities. Thank you for your continued support. By working together, we will all get through this difficult time.
Stay with us,
Angie L Reese-Hawkins