It’s hard to believe that we are entering our 9th week of shut down. We deeply miss the conversations and connections that occur on a daily basis within our facility during normal operations. We recognize that many of you are anxious to return and have questions about our plans and processes. The short answer is that we don't yet have a firm date for reopening. Governor Mills has unveiled her phased reopening plan for the state, and this is helpful. We're connecting with our resources, including the CDC, State licensing, our insurance companies, medical advisers, etc. to plan for a safe and successful reopening.
Our top priority is the health and safety of our members, staff and community. We’re focused on putting together a plan for reopening, including a cleaning and sanitation schedule, that takes into consideration information and advice from numerous resources, while still ensuring we’re able to provide a great experience at the Y. We won’t reopen until we have a plan we feel confident in.
As you've read in the news, there are a LOT of considerations to put into place in order to reopen. Many are looking for specific information on our plan, and when it is ready to share, we will be reaching out to members with details. Until this happens, we are actively working to continue to serve our members in any capacity we can. This ingenuity and creativity is in keeping with the Y’s long history of adapting to meet the ever changing needs of the communities we serve.
Our doors may be closed, but our work continues.
The 88 men in our housing program are healthy and safe. (And, our emergency response plan is being used across the state to ensure the safety of countless Mainers living in congregate settings.)
2,395 older members and several hundred families are called weekly – ensuring they receive support and connection vital for wellbeing. Through these calls we’ve learned of families in need of food and elderly pet owners unable to safely go to the store for dog food – and have acted to help.
1,000 healthy meals are delivered to families each week through of our partnership with Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare and Cooking for Community. (This partnership also helps local restaurants and their employees.)
Mainers of all ages are connecting through our virtual services, including wellness classes, kids’ activities, and English conversation classes for New Americans.
321 children in our child care programs continue to learn, by inviting them to meet virtually with teachers twice a week and to go over at-home curriculum.
I know the ambiguity of these circumstances make planning a challenge. We are feeling it, too. I want to be able to give you a firm opening date and to have it be accurate. Please bear with us as we work to make this happen. And please feel free to reach out any time with questions.
I hope you and your family are doing well. We thank you for your understanding during this challenging time. Be safe and we look forward to seeing you again soon.
With gratitude and hope,
Helen L. Breña President & CEO YMCA of Southern Maine
P.S. If you have questions about your membership, our programs, or how you can help, please contact your local branch below: