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YMCA: Developing Rowan youth with help from United Way

By Jamie Morgan

Special to the Post

To many people, the YMCA means swimming, working out and childcare. But the Y is so much more than that. The Y is a cause-driven organization that is for youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. That’s because a strong community can only be achieved when we invest in our kids, our health and our neighbors.

With summer now in full swing, our attention turns to developing Rowan County’s youth with our YMCA Summer Day Camp Program. This summer at the Y, we are committed to providing life-changing experiences for all kids in our communities. Y kids are having the summer of a lifetime filling their days with fun activities such as weekly field trips, Gaga Pit Competitions, First Tee Golf programming, Water Safety programming, Slip-N-Slides and a July Mini Mud Run.

Through this programming, our trained counselors are teaching the character values of honesty, caring, respect, responsibility and faith. Part of the Y’s commitment to social responsibility means that we never turn anyone away due to the inability to pay for services. It would be a tragedy if we had kids in our communities who wanted and needed to be in a YMCA summer camp, but did not attend because they could not afford it. We are currently serving 370 kids in our summer day camp program at our East, South and Salisbury YMCA branches. Countywide, 176 youth are receiving some sort of financial assistance or scholarship that will be valued at $142,124 by the end of the summer.

The YMCA of Rowan County is a proud member agency of the Rowan County United Way. The United Way supports the YMCA with yearly funding that is used in the Y’s Open Doors financial assistance program. This program provides financial assistance for youth who would like to participate in YMCA program activities but may not be able to afford it. Without Rowan County United Way’s support, many of the 176 youth that are receiving financial assistance this summer would be left at home alone and could end up on our streets unsupervised and unsafe.

So when you are approached to give to our local United Way campaign, please dig deep and support the Rowan County United Way. Know that your gift will truly make a difference in a child’s life. Thank you for your continued support of the YMCA and United Way.

 

Morgan is CEO of the YMCA of Rowan County.

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