Effective Tuesday, March 17, amid what we know to be unprecedented and uncertain times and in the interest of public health, the Boothbay Region YMCA is suspending on-site operations until April 1, 2020. We will continue child care as outlined later in this letter.The BRYMCA serves a membership of more than 3,000,and we feel it is our responsibility to keep our community safe and prevent the spread of the coronavirus.We ask that you join us in this effort; our Y is going to need your support through this crisis to remain financially viable and available to the community for the long term. Continuing your membership through this time and/or donating to our Annual Campaign will help us continue to respond during this time of crisis. We are counting on your support and partnership to help to steer our Y and community through this daunting challenge.
As members, we care about you and your health and wellness. In the coming days, Y staff will roll out exercise tips and outdoor wellness options through our social media accounts. For those enrolled in Y programs, we will be extending our winter program schedule by two weeks. Continue to look for more details in further announcements.
“We know changes that occur this quickly are apt to leave more questions than answers,” Andy Hamblett, the Y’s executive director said, “and I can assure all our members and community friends that our leadership team is working around the clock to answer as many as possible, always with the health and safety and well-being of our citizens in mind. Meeting this challenge directly and with meaning comes with risks and sacrifice to so many groups, businesses and individuals who feel understandably exposed.” With the closing of many area schools across the region, there are children who remain in need of service and parents who need our childcare. As a community-based organization we feel we must respond to this critical need. We encourage families to keep their children at home; however, it goes without saying that some parents must work, and some parents are first-responders and “essential” employees who must work to protect us. We aim to provide a safe and reliable haven for as many of our affected childcare families as possible. Childcare will continue at our Child Enrichment Center, and we will support school-age programming as needed for siblings in our early childhood programs and for Fit Kids members. Childcare services will lower class sizes to a maximum of 10. To achieve this goal, staff may use additional spaces in our Y. Each space will be isolated from the other so that recommended goals of social distancing are met. We will extend child care and school-age spots to our first responders, medical employees, and people in positions that are significant to the operations of our community during times of crisis.
The coronavirus outbreak is a serious national health crisis with consequential potential outcomes. A slow-rising tide is now a full-blown pandemic. Our broader community has reacted collectively to deal smartly and as best it can with the challenge at home. We’re meeting an unknown challenge with a united sense of urgency and priority.
Our decisions announced today are based on that shared effort to protect and help all our citizens, but especially the most vulnerable among us. For more than 65 years, the Boothbay Region YMCA has been an organization that has met the challenges and needs of our community. Today, along with our community at large, we aim to step up and act consistently with our legacy in that regard. Please stay safe and positive.