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Why we all need the YMCA

Written by Nancy Simpson. Posted in Featured

Published on February 21, 2012 with No Comments

At the Portage Township YMCA, strengthening community through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility is our cause. Every day, we work side-by-side with community members to address the most-pressing needs in the Portage Community and to make sure that everyone – regardless of age, income or background – has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. Our work is not easy, but real and lasting changes can only come about when we work together to invest in our kids, our health and our neighbors and the first step to achieving these improvements is having the full support of our community.

In many places, the Y is known as a place to go swimming or work out, but it’s much more than that; it’s a place that changes lives. For example, the Cochran family utilizes the Y’s Child Care and Development Center for full-time day care.

Michael Cochran, the father of that family gave the following testimonial:

My girls have been cared for at the Portage YMCA Child Care and Development Center since April 26, 2010. You bet I remember the date. How could a parent forget their children’s first day? Mommy and daddy had a harder time adjusting than our children. But after mommy stayed home with the girls for their first two years of life, it was time for them to go to what the girls now call “school.” Trish and I checked out a number of daycare facilities and reviewed some recommended by friends and family. None made us as comfortable as the care at the Portage Y. (We do live in Hobart.) The teachers and staff are awesome and really interact with the children. A month or two after first enrolling our children, Katie told me her best friend was Miss Carol (Rossworm), her teacher in the two-year-old room. If you were to see and hear my twins you’d be impressed with what they have already learned in life and by what month: Spelling their names, their manners, counting, coloring inside the lines, their coordination, learning to interact with other children, sharing, etc.

I am ever thankful for the service and care the Child Care and Development Center provides for my children. American scholar, teacher and Scout leader Forest E. Witcraft once wrote: “A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of car I drove…but the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child.”

Testimonials like this demonstrate the intrinsic value of having a Y in Portage, and there are many others who could benefit greatly from the different services and programs offered by the Portage Township YMCA. This is why we are launching our annual community support campaign. Your financial gift to the campaign will help continue the important work the Y does, be it providing kids a safe place to learn and grow before or after school; offering families opportunities to reconnect and grow together; or providing people of all backgrounds access to education and training to help them reach their full potential.

We encourage everyone in the community to join our cause. When we all pitch in and help our neighbors, we make a meaningful, enduring impact in the lives of children and families and ultimately, strengthen our community.

You can support the Portage Township YMCA’s annual support campaign “They Depend on Us, We Depend on You” or volunteer.

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About Nancy Simpson

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All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Chronicle. Nancy Simpson is the Marketing and Fund Development Director at the Portage Township YMCA. She offers information on how the nation's leading nonprofit is committed to strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. For more information, call 219-762-9622 or visit www.ymcaofportage.org.

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