LIVINGSTON, NJ — As the federal government shutdown drags on, the seven branches of the Metropolitan YMCA of the Oranges are extending support to those impacted.

Any federal government employee who is not being paid due to the government shutdown is welcome to use the West Essex YMCA’s facilities free of charge. The YMCA is offering federal employees a free one-month membership and waiving joiner fees, and those who already are YMCA members will have their next month’s membership fee waived. 

In addition, federal workers who rely on YMCA for childcare—at its early child learning centers or before-and after-school programs—can defer payments until Feb. 28 or when the shutdown ends.

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“At the YMCA, we work to strengthen the foundations of our communities. When we see an area in our community where help is needed, we do all we can,” said Metropolitan YMCA of the Oranges president and chief executive officer Richard Gorab. “We hope that those impacted by the government shutdown will take advantage of the mental, physical and emotional support we are here to give everyone in our community.”

Gorab added that federal employees need only show their government-issued ID at the member services desk of their local Metro YMCA branch to take advantage of the offer.

The Metro YMCA branches include the West Essex YMCA in Livingston; the East Orange YMCA in East Orange; the South Mountain YMCA in Maplewood; the Wayne YMCA in Wayne; Fairview Lake YMCA Camps in Stillwater; the Sussex County YMCA in Hardyston; and the YMCA of Greater Bergen County in Hackensack.

The Metro YMCA and its branches are committed to helping those in need, and have always provided financial assistance to ensure everyone can access the YMCA’s facilities and program offerings. In 2018 alone, the Metro YMCA provided more than $1.5 million in financial assistance to provide adults and families access to childcare, summer camp, programs and memberships, according to Gorab.

“We are grateful to the many individuals who donate to the YMCA every year to make this possible,” he said.

The Metro YMCA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, so donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law. Learn more by clicking HERE