The Alliance of Massachusetts YMCAs have worked with the Massachusetts legislature and the Baker Administration to secure $10 Million for capital improvements and staffing development in the American Rescue Plan Act funding.
The 28 YMCA Associations and their 86 branches will each be able to access a portion of this funding to update their facilities and camps with necessary repairs and renovations, information technology, and heating, ventilation, and air systems over the next three years. A portion of the $10 million will go towards the development of local YMCA staff. With 14,000 staff and 1,300 job openings, Massachusetts YMCAs are looking forward to implementing a robust growth plan for existing and future staff.
Massachusetts YMCAs are one of the largest community service providers in the state. Serving over 500,000 youth under 19 annually and 3 million Massachusetts residents, their buildings are often used as a meeting space for teens, a classroom for the earliest learners, a place to find wellness, and a location for community meetings. Most of the YMCA buildings were built in the early 1900s and need updating to continue serving the changing needs of their communities.
“Funding from the American Rescue Plan has been vital to keeping our child care centers open and operating during the pandemic,” says Kathleen Walsh, President and CEO, YMCA of Metro North. “Child care and youth development are at the heart of our mission and these funds will help to advance our curriculum and staffing as we continue to recover in the next year.”
The YMCA of Metro North is thankful for the support of our legislators in providing funding for our Y to be able to meet the needs of our community through COVID. These funds will help us with our facilities to improve access to needed services. Additionally, these funds will help us with our workforce, who has been at the forefront of providing early learning support, school-age care, and remote learning, as well as direct services to families. These funds are crucial to helping our communities recover.
“We are so grateful for the partnership with the Massachusetts Legislature and the Baker Administration that has led to all YMCAs being able to access these funds. This funding will assist the YMCAs in updating their buildings and camps as well as prepare new and existing staff for YMCA careers,” said Kate-Marie Roycroft, Interim CEO, Alliance of Massachusetts YMCAs.
The pandemic had a devastating effect on all nonprofits and the YMCAs were not spared. As a nonprofit, the YMCA had to continue its essential services of educating youth, feeding those in need, providing housing for their residents. Like most other nonprofits, YMCAs are dealing with attrition and labor shortages in all areas of their operations because of the pandemic. Before the pandemic, YMCAs employed around 22,000 team members. YMCAs now employ around 14,000. This funding will assist them in hiring, retaining, and furthering benefits for staff.
“The YMCA offers a robust career pathway and development plan for staff members. This funding will provide opportunities for more staff members and future employees to take advantage of this pathway,” said Kathy Viens, Chair of the Alliance of Massachusetts YMCAs and CEO of the Holyoke YMCA. “Similarly, many of the YMCAs facilities have projects that could utilize this funding in order to respond to how their communities changed during the pandemic.”
YMCAs look forward to making these funds work for their communities over the next three years.