The year 2020 was full of twists and turns, to put it mildly! Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the pandemic of racial violence, and nationwide economic downturn, our communities have shifted priorities and new needs have emerged. And throughout this unprecedented time, the Y has not missed a beat.
What We’ve Been Up To
Since March 2020, here are some of the ways we changed what we do to better serve the community.
- We started providing childcare for essential workers: initially healthcare workers, then other essential workers such as food service industry employees, then everyone.
- We started providing food available to anyone in our communities, no questions asked.
- We started coordinating wellness checks and care packages of essentials for seniors.
- We started providing virtual resources to help people maintain their health from the safety of their homes.
- We launched the Better Us Initiative to develop strategies to address the effects of systemic racism in our communities
- We offered free COVID testing at our facilities, available to anyone in need.
It was an honor to be able to serve our communities in these ways. What we learned from 2020 is that in the face of tragedy, we are stronger when we step up to help each other out. We are all stronger together.
Where We’re Going
Looking forward, our communities will face new challenges as we grapple with the effects of this year on our future. This is how you can expect the Y to continue to step up:
- More virtual offerings: starting in January, the Y will launch a virtual branch. Stay tuned for more information!
- More community needs: 2020 may be over, but more and more families are grappling with unemployment, school closures, and more. We plan to continue offering food distribution and care/safety kits when possible.
- More work for the Better Us Initiative. The Initiative is doing work internally as well as for the community to ensure our Ys are as equitable as possible. Stay tuned for more information in 2021.
- More student support through Y Scholastic Centers, where students can receive academic help and work remotely during the school day.
We are so grateful you stayed with us through 2020 and we are excited for what lies ahead in 2021. Let us know what you think about our way forward by tagging us in your social media post with #NewYearNewY.