We are here For a Better Us. We are also here for Healthy Living. And Youth Development. And Social Responsibility. Our Cause and Our Mission have not been lost on us due to this unprecedented virus. Instead we shifted, as many of you have shifted, to working from home, to cutting back, to existing virtually. Though our doors may have been closed, we were still working incredibly hard with a much smaller staff for the greater good of our community. During the 6 months we were closed, even without collecting monthly membership dues, we continued to provide fitness programming, offer childcare, feed our more vulnerable, and pay some rather significant fixed costs in order to operate.
In these times of uncertainty, the YMCA provides normalcy and steadiness. We need your help to continue our Mission, to continue forward, and to thrive in this environment and beyond.
Please join us in donating towards our Mission: Forward campaign and help us reach our goal of raising $300,000. This money will help us run the programming that our community has relied on: Before and After School Care, Childcare, Swim Lessons, Emergency Food Box Deliveries, Group Exercise, Sports Camps and Leagues. It will also help us pay for annual costs and utilities that keep our building standing, as well as ensure that we can continue to serve the Great Lakes Bay Region for years to come.
If you can give, please give generously to the health and wellbeing of our community. You may make a tax-deductible donation online right now through the button below, or complete a pledge form and submit it to Jessica Gohs, Accounting Manager.
Closed, but Open
Since March 16th, when our doors were first closed, we have:
- Fed over 62,000 no-cost meals to youth
- Provided quality childcare to essential workers
- Hosted free virtual fitness classes and shared health & wellness tips online
- Distributed over 1,200 Emergency Food Boxes to families and individuals in need
- Phoned our most vulnerable members to provide a sense of belonging and friendship when social distancing was first put into effect
- Gave school-aged children a chance to play at Summer Camp
- Collaborated with various businesses for donations and grants to help run our most needed programs, including:
- Walmart provided us the Walmart Food Grant to expand our hunger relief efforts
- SC Johnson donated ZipLoc Bags and awarded us a grant for the Free Youth Food Program
- Burger King donated milk to the Free Youth Food Program
- McDonalds donated milk and apples to the Free Youth Food Program
- Jets Pizza donated pizza to the Free Youth Food Program
- Hidden Harvest provided produce boxes for the Emergency Food Boxes
- 211 partners with us to distribute Emergency Food Boxes
- Bosco Food Service donated to the Free Youth Food Program
- Food Bank of Eastern Michigan donated to the Free Youth Food Program and Emergency Food Boxes
- Bay Area Community Foundation awarded us grants allowing us to deliver Emergency Food Boxes and preparing our facility to reopen safely
- Sunrise National Distributors lent a vehicle to the Emergency Food Box program to provide deliveries
- United Way awarded us a grant to reopen our facility safely
- Coached youth athletes at various summer sports camps
- Activated our community with virtual personal training and other fitness options
- Got moving with Outdoor Group Exercise classes, available to all
- Partnered with other local organizations like United Way and CAN Council to help keep their service to Bay County in action
- Taught children drowning prevention and swim basics
- Hosted our Rise ‘n Shine 5K virtually with over 100 participants, raising over $21,000 for our Financial Assistance Program
Ours was one of the only YMCAs in the state to decide not to collect any monthly membership dues for the 6 month closure. So as to not increase programming costs during the mandated closure for participants, we relied on cash reserves and worked diligently to find grants and other funding resources so that those who rely on the YMCA for services could continue to do so as allowable. We have since reopened while adhering to strict guidelines and recommendations to operate our facility safely. With many uncertainties created by the ongoing pandemic, it is difficult for us to rely on membership dues to help sustain our operations.
Please donate today to ensure that these programs can continue to operate, that families continue to receive meals, and that children receive an outlet for physical exercise and play for years to come.
For Another 135 Years
The YMCA was first founded in Bay City in 1885. Since then we have coached thousands of children in basketball, volleyball (both invented at a YMCA!), flag football, and most recently, dodgeball. We led countless hours of senior aerobics classes both in the studio and in the water. We have watched hundreds of children grow through our childcare programs including Afterschool care, Preschool, and Infant care. We have taught drowning prevention, swim lessons, and lifeguard certification courses. We have provided millions of dollars in subsidized memberships, childcare, and summer camp enrollment for those in need. We have seen hundreds of pounds shed, muscles built, and overall health increase in these last 135 years. We have fed youth and families at no cost to them. We have seen seniors pedaling on our stationary bikes, powerlifters at the squat racks, mothers walking the track, paddleball champions dominating our racquetball courts, young professionals shooting free throws on the basketball courts, and athletes of all sizes and ages participating in our many group exercise classes.
We have been here for 135 years, and we have remained here through this unprecedented pandemic. Now, we need your help to continue filling the needs and strengthening our community for another 135 years.
The Power of We
Today, the health and wellness of the Great Lakes Bay Region is at stake and the need for our services has never been greater. After a nearly six month closure and subsequent revenue loss, this campaign will move our Mission forward to secure a safe, responsible, and emotionally supportive environment for all. By reviving the YMCA to its pre-closure state, we will help to prevent disease and drive the improvement of our community’s physical health, safety, and emotional well-being through programs that strengthen the spirit, mind, and body. The YMCA has been part of the Bay City community for 135 years and this campaign will ensure our presence into the future.
Make a tax-deductible donation now. Any amount helps and will be used towards our Mission: Forward campaign. Choose to fill out the pledge form and make monthly payments. If you can donate $30 a month for 3 months, by the end of your campaign you will have helped us raise almost $100! You can make a significant impact. A donation of just $50 can help us to provide care, support, and feed a child for one full day. Complete our Pledge Form and commit to helping sustain your YMCA.