By Kristen McConnell—
Muncie, IN— Yesterday, the YMCA of Muncie is unveiled a bold vision for a centrally located YMCA that reaches deep into the community, offering expanded services with wellness minded indoor and outdoor activities for all.
By providing a unifying, neutral catalyst for positive change, the project has potential to be a turning point for the community. A strong Y signals a thriving community. “The YMCA is a community benefit organization. It not only benefits its 20,000+ constituents, but most importantly the Y is also a benefit to the businesses, schools and other non-profits in our community,” says Delaina Boyd, Associate Vice President of Community Engagement for Ball State University.
Central for all people
As a central gathering place and service hub, the new facility would consolidate multiple YMCA branches into an accessible central location adjacent to parklands, river, bike and pedestrian trails and Muncie City transit routes. This move would allow the Y to simultaneously leverage resources to provide invaluable outreach, recreation and educational services where it is most needed. YMCA of Muncie, CEO, Chad Zaucha, says, “This is an important time in the history of the YMCA of Muncie. We have the opportunity to ensure future generations have the same strong, vibrant Y that has been such a benefit.”
The YMCA of Muncie consolidation would further result in reducing the annual operating cost, allowing the Y to provide essential services both within the facility and out in the community, such as affordable early childhood education, safe gathering spaces and programing for youth, and healthy, affordable activities for everyone including preschoolers, school age children, families and active older adults.
Expanded, holistic vision
The “hub” concept for the YMCA of Muncie works toward a holistic vision that ultimately expands on the services the YMCA can offer – through parkland and river access, and with greater connections to other destinations and social services already established in our community. “We want this new YMCA to be on common ground,” says Steve Smith, YMCA of Muncie Board President, “ a place for people of all ages, races, socio-economic status, for ALL people, to be welcome.”
In the proposed riverside location, the Y can help increase area property values, spur additional investment in the immediately adjacent neighborhoods to the north and west and link new opportunities in the White River Canal District to the south.
A place for unity
The YMCA and the City of Muncie share common goals in unifying its constituents: ‘As a multi-faceted organization, the Y serves all segments of the community, giving everyone a place to belong.’
To build a world class gathering hub will take community support and innovative partnerships to advance this exciting vision for greater impact.
About the YMCA of Muncie
The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. The YMCA of Muncie has served Delaware and Kosciusko Counties since 1881, with an excellent track record of providing quality mission driven programs that enrich the lives of all people in spirit, mind and body.
Visit the Y online at www.muncieymca.org or on Social Media @YMCA of Muncie.