YMCA celebrates five years in Cayman

| 04/12/2017
CNS Local Life

Kids at YMCA camp

(CNS Local Life): The YMCA is celebrating its fifth anniversary in Cayman with a family fun day on Saturday, 9 December, from 9am to 1pm at the Field of Dreams. The event will include kickball, music, treats and carnival activities like a dunk tank, slip and slide, face painting and photo booth. All activities, food and drink will be free.

Looking ahead, the YMCA’s goal is to offer a minimum of one full-service, traditional facility, which will provide a wide range of programmes for youth, adults, families and seniors by 2019, stated a press release.

YMCA chairman Andrew Johnson said he is excited about the direction of the organisation in the Cayman Islands. “With a strong board, excellent staff, engaged stakeholders, and a growing group of friends and supporters, the future of the YMCA of the Cayman Islands is very bright,” he said.

“From this position of health and strength and with our eyes on the mission and goals before us, we are trusting God to continue to lead and strengthen us in our work to provide the most significant and positive influence on our community possible.”

The YMCA focuses on youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, with more than 30% of Cayman’s school-aged youth now participating in at least one of the organisation’s programmes, and young people are putting into practice the Y values of honesty, caring, respect, responsibility and faith, said the release.

The YMCA now operates in nine schools, representing 15 government primary and high schools, affecting as many as 1,600 young people.

First and only YMCA CEO Greg Smith, who was hired in 2013, said of the organisation: “We are making lives better. We are inspiring young people – plus a few adults too – to become the best version of themselves. We are helping the island become healthier and stronger. Putting character values into practice have always been, and will always be, the key to us sharing rich and meaningful lives. We’re blessed to be in a very special place, and wise to do all we can to preserve and improve it.”

The Y employs more than 100 part- and full-time staff to deliver all its programmes and services, plus another 75 volunteers at any given time. Although it has been a successful start, the leadership of the Y recognises there is much more work to do. Earlier this year, the Y announced plans to build a ropes challenge course to promote team-building and social skill development, a venture made possible by the Deputy Governor’s 5K Challenge and support from CUC. This past year, the Y also launched a traditional day camp in Cayman Brac as well as the first summer camp exchange programme for Brac campers and counselors in training.

For more information, go to the YMCA website, or call (926-9622) or email the YMCA

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Category: Community, Service Organisations

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