CINCINNATI, OHIO (Dec. 3, 2018) – The Melrose YMCA is being re-imagined. After months of conversations with members and community partners and a review of community needs, the 74-year-old Walnut Hills facility at 2840 Melrose Avenue, is embarking on a new coalition journey. The place-based collaboration with several community partners will help address critical community needs for youth, adults and families in one location.
“Because we believe that in healthy environments people grow and learn and that a healthy environment must include a comprehensive approach, in 2019, we will welcome Life Skills School and Easterseals to provide services at the site. In addition, the Y will expand partnerships with City Gospel Mission, Urban Young Life and the Freestore Foodbank,” said YMCA President and CEO Jorge Perez. “Along with health and wellness efforts, this collaborative will also support academic pursuits, workforce readiness, recreation for veterans, access to nutritious food, spiritual development and much more! Our commitment to helping our neighbors reach goals, build supportive relationships, and find a place where they can belong, has brought us to this one-stop-shop solution. In collaboration with our partners, we will again support thousands of our friends along their developmental journeys; we will be building on the strengths and histories of each organization.”
The Life Skills School (renamed the Queen City Career Prep High School in Jan. 2019) will relocate to the Melrose facility in January 2019. This career prep high school for students, ages 16-21, provides workforce readiness and industry credential programs. The school serves students who have fallen behind in their studies or face significant barriers to earning a high school diploma. Life Skills personalizes each student’s graduation pathway using a variety of learning modes, including live instruction, self-paced learning, computer-facilitated learning and career training by industry professionals. The YMCA will help by providing basic youth development and college readiness support.
Easterseals will also relocate some of its programming aimed at removing barriers to employment and community integration for individuals with disabilities, veterans and youth and adults with economic disadvantages. In addition, current partnerships with City Gospel Mission, Urban Young Life, and the Freestore Foodbank will expand their offerings of youth ballet, faith-based teen clubs and access to nutritious food.
To complete needed renovations to the fitness and aquatic areas, on-site fitness and aquatic services at the Melrose YMCA will be suspended on Friday, December 21, 2018. Current wellness members will be accommodated at any of the 13 other YMCA of Greater Cincinnati locations across southwest Ohio and northern Kentucky. The newly renovated fitness center is expected to re-open in August 2019. The YMCA will work with the Easterseals Youth Build program to coordinate parts of the renovation effort. The “move-in” process for the other partners will begin immediately, as space is made ready.
“We are excited to see how this new and unique concept for the Melrose facility will encourage collaboration among partners, improve services, increase impact and improve the efficiency of each organization. This endeavor is an excellent example of a collective impact effort,” said Easterseals President and CEO Pam Green.
Easterseals is changing the way the world views and defines disability. They are breaking down barriers to employment for people with disabilities, people facing disadvantages, and veterans. They are committed to building a more diverse and inclusive workforce and community in Greater Cincinnati. They incorporate collaboration and innovation in order to serve nearly 8,000 people with disabilities, people facing disadvantages, and veterans every year, helping them take critical steps toward self-sufficiency. For more information about the Easterseals, visit www.easterseals.com, call (513) 281-2316
About Life Skills
Life Skills is a career prep high school for students ages 16-21 that provides workforce readiness and industry credential programs. The school serves students who have fallen behind in their studies or face significant barriers to earning a high school diploma. The school personalizes each student’s graduation pathway with options that include alternative schedules, and a variety of learning modes, including live instruction, self-paced learning, computer-facilitated learning, and career training by industry professionals. For more information about Life Skills, www.lifeskillshs.com, call 888-995-7143
About City Gospel Mission
City Gospel Mission helps the homeless and hurting break the cycle of poverty and despair. They engage, equip and empower those in need with the spiritual, emotional, mental and physical skills and resources to achieve long-term life transformation and self-sufficiency. Their proven programs and services are centered on caring, personal relationships focused in four key service areas: food and shelter, recovery, at-risk youth and job readiness and placement. For more information about the City Gospel Mission, visit www.citygospelmission.org, call (513) 241-5525
About Urban Young Life
Young Life is committed to building lasting relationships with teens, urging them on toward a brighter future in which they might break free from the cycle of generational poverty. Young Life leaders equip teens to become leaders themselves, reaching out to their high school friends, building a community that creates a positive ripple effect of change in our schools and our city. For more information about Urban Young Life visit www.gcuyl.younglife.org, call (513) 469-7575.