‘A staple in the greater Monroe community is back’

01 Sep 2020 | 07:20

    The South Orange Family YMCA, a staple in the greater Monroe community, is back! We’re ready to re-engage our members and are looking forward to serving families with the programs and services

    Although our doors were closed for nearly the past six months, our mission never stopped.

    We have been working around the clock through this pandemic to continue providing necessary services to our region.

    For example, in early May, the Y opened an Emergency Child Care Service for essential workers at two Orange County locations.

    Over the last eight weeks, the YMCA also operated three day camps in Orange County, including Camp Discovery in Harriman, serving nearly 375 kids each week, without any pandemic-related incidents. We spent a great amount of time with staff trainings to ensure we followed all best practices related to COVID-19. We believe the YMCA exceeded the expectations of state and local authorities and provided a fun, outdoor, memorable and safe summer experience. These include wearing of masks, enforcing social distancing, frequent hand washing, health screenings upon entry, properly sanitizing our facilities, and, of course, following all state and local recommendations.

    We knew our members and our community were watching us, and we were committed to success.

    We’ve transferred this meticulous attention to health and safety detail to our branches, working months behind the scene to ensure our members would feel comfortable coming here and resuming their important health and wellness work. Yes, the Y – like any other place - will look different than people may remember it in March. Our staff are committed to our facilities being safe. That does mean new protocols are in place. As a result, we are confident we are in a position to resume operations safely for both our members and staff.

    We have always said the Y is the hub of any community, and we are for the greater Monroe area. Although we’ve been on an extended hiatus, we have taken this time to re-imagine ourselves. Plus, the work on our pool has continued, and we are hopeful to open early next year.

    We are committed to making sure our member experience is the best it can be given the parameters we have been given. We are excited for the opportunity to see our YMCA family and welcome back our loyal members who we have deeply missed.

    Equally important, we are looking forward to easing back into the important and unique connections we have with our community. We are committed to finding new and innovative ways to build on what exists as we all continue to navigate our lives in this pandemic environment. We have missed you all.

    Ellen Beadle, Branch Executive Director, South Orange Family YMCA

    Ross Miceli, Chief Operations Officer, Middletown YMCA