The YMCA is a safe place that nurtures and strengthens families and communities. Our buildings are focal points, but our programs are our tools for bringing community together.
Our programs are not confined to a particular location. We believe our commitment to our neighbors extends beyond our walls and into communities.
Our first neighborhood-strengthening initiative took place in the Linden community on the city’s north side. In partnership with Battelle, we launched YMCA without Walls: Linden.
Through YMCA Without Walls: Linden, we are able to offer every child and family access to YMCA programming. Our first effort came in June 2017, when we began to operate a youth sports program at St. Stephen’s Community House.
Our initiative was also involved with leadership cohorts that offered advice on company improvements and strategic goals to businesses in Linden.
In the future, we will continue to leverage a ServeOhio grant and work with AmeriCorps to begin YMCA Community Corps: Linden. Members of this program will serve in the Linden area to beautify neighborhoods, provide safe routes to school, and operate mid-day health and wellness opportunities.
AEP’s commitment to our partnership will allow us to expand YMCA Without Walls to the Hilltop area.
YMCA Community Corps: Linden begins recruitment
In collaboration with AmeriCorps, YMCA Community Corps: Linden began to recruit members to help serve the north side neighborhood. Members are given a living allowance and education award in exchange for serving 900 hours in the community doing various projects including youth development and neighborhood beautification.
Taking the Y on the road: Family Fun Factory is born
In 2017, we created our newest social enterprise: YMCA Family Fun Factory. In 2018, thanks to a grant from the Columbus Foundation, we will bring a mobile unit of bounce houses, gaga pits and other activities around Central Ohio to entertain and enhance families outside of our YMCA walls.
YMCA Food Program Helps Feed Central Ohio
We are committed to ensuring kids have nutritious and delicious food. Our Child and Adult Care Food Program provides food at no cost to ages 1-18. In addition, we promote understanding nutrition’s role in the physical, mental, and social health of children and help develop positive food attitudes.
* Source: U.S. Census, 2016