LIVING OUR Y CAUSE DURING 2020
The past 9 months have brought unexpected circumstance for all of us.
As the pandemic reached our state last spring, we knew the Y had to be positioned to help. In mid-March we shifted our operations to meet the emerging needs from COVID-19 – emergency child care for essential personnel and working families, community coordination for child care solutions, food distribution for children and seniors, and assistance to our Y members and general community members. We provided deep discounts to essential personnel who were burdened with the financial cost of child care unexpectedly during the school year.
We ask that you consider your current situation and whether you are able to make a gift to the Y that is meaningful to you. We understand many individuals, families, and businesses have been deeply affected by COVID-19, and thus, may not be in a position to help at this time. Regardless, know that the work we do will continue long after the Pandemic is over.
COVID-19 Emergency Childcare for a community in crisis:
At the moment school closures became eminent last spring, our Y mobilized to provide much-needed child care to families, with a priority for those most in need of child care, including essential personnel and single-parent working families. In addition to our work in providing child care, we collaborated with several key entities, including Child Care Resource & Referral and the Waterloo and Cedar Falls school districts to form the COVID-19 Emergency Childcare Response Initiative to identify and ensure solutions for child care across the Cedar Valley.
Community outreach for diversity and inclusion:
In the midst of the pandemic, our community and nation have faced an awakening regarding racial justice issues. Across the nation Ys are standing for equality and inclusion. Locally we are playing a vital role in leading the effort to provide community-serving organizations across the Cedar Valley with tools and resources to ensure our sector is equipped to serve our diverse community and build a more equitable place for all.
Seniors comprise a large portion of our membership. While the fellowship we are accustomed to has been disrupted by social distancing, our commitment to the health and well-being of our members remains fervent. During our facility shut-down we began to engage from a distance to provide individual assistance and encouragement. We will continue this engagement as the pandemic impacts some members use of our facility.
Emergency Food Distribution:
When food shortages and safe access to grocery stores affected the well-being of our members and others in the community, we partnered in food distribution with the food bank. Y staff collected and delivered hundreds of boxes full of a weeks-worth of groceries. For Thanksgiving and Christmas we will be distributing food baskets to those most deserving, including many Healthcare Heros of the Cedar Valley. We will continue to participate in this important service while the pandemic risks food security.
You can count on us and the Cedar Valley can count on us.
- We will continue to prioritize child care. We understand the important role that safe, affordable child care makes in supporting a working family.
- We will continue to offer financial assistance to make membership at the Y accessible regardless of one’s financial circumstance.
- We will continue to take measures to provide the safest environment possible at the Y.
- We will continue to identify community needs and step up to help.
With much uncertainty, the one thing is clear – the Y will continue LIVING OUR CAUSE of strengthening community, during this time and going forward.