For some, it is just another week of summer. But for those at the Audubon YMCA, this week means a bit more.
“The purpose of this special week is to celebrate the work of the YMCA in local communities across the Commonwealth, including right here in Audubon,” said Beth Ann Mazza, marketing coordinator of the Audubon Y.
As part of the week-long celebration, tomorrow the Audubon Y will host a “Better Together” celebration from 9 to 10 a.m. The public is invited to attend the event, which will feature many local politicians and community leaders to discuss the needs and uses of the organization.
Representative Warren Kampf, Methacton School District Superintendent Dr. David Zerbe, Norristown Area School District director Pearl Schmidt, and other officials will join the YMCA staff and volunteers at the Audubon YMCA, 2460 Boulevard of the Generals for a morning at the Y.
Why the celebration? Mazza said that is simple.
“As a society, we are afraid to ask for help,” said Mazza. “But at the Y, we never turn anyone away.”
The Y isn’t just a gym. There is much more to the programs and facilities.
“Our purpose is to reach out to those people in our community,” said Mazza. “We help to advocate for those that need it, and hope to explain further the programs we have.”
Beyond swim lessons and fitness, Mazza said that the Y is doing so much more that most people are totally unaware of.
“We want to show in a one-hour meeting who we are, what we do,” she said. “What people don’t know is that what we do to serve this community.”
The Audubon facility alone operates with a $4 million budget annually. One portion of that is scholarship funding.
“We put out over $500,000 in scholarship awards to people with financial challenges,” said Mazza. “Sometimes we fund childcare so parents can go back to work, or a camp so they can work through the summer.”
Other times, the Y assists those in need to get healthy.
“We offer workouts for those that can’t afford a gym membership,” she said. “People just think we are like every other gym, that we’re just a gym. They don’t realize how much good we do in the community and the healthy lifestyles we promote.”
Thursday’s celebration will include a ribbon-cutting ceremony of our new Teen Center.
“Our guests will have the opportunity to see the Y in action, interact with members, be entertained by our preschool students and hear about our hopes for the future in serving our community,” said Mazza of the day’s activities. “Guests will also have an opportunity to personally hear from one of our members on how the Y has helped her and her family achieve a happy, healthy and well-balanced lifestyle.”
Mazza invites the Lower Providence Township community members to attend the events Thursday morning. Starting at 9 a.m., all may attend.
“The Y’s experience and strong relationships throughout our communities mean that we can organize grassroots efforts and influence public policy around a wide range of social issues, such as child welfare and public health,” said Mazza. She hopes that those that visit will understand more what the organization does for the area.