After closing its facilities on March 18 due to Ohio Governor DeWine’s stay-at-home order surrounding the spread of COVID-19, the Fayette County Family YMCA reopened recently.
The reopening is being conducted under the guidance of state and local health authorities and will take place in phases. Currently the fitness center, indoor track, and limited group exercise classes are available.
“The Fayette County Family YMCA has served the community for more than 20 years, during which we have made it through many challenging times together, none perhaps as impactful for our community and our Y as this COVID crisis,” Douglas Saunders, Fayette County Family YMCA CEO said. “We are thrilled to begin reopening our facilities, welcoming back our members and the community, and getting back to what we do best – helping everyone reach their full potential.”
In preparation for reopening facilities, the YMCA has been following guidelines from health experts and local officials to ensure all components of facilities, including fitness equipment and areas, locker rooms, child care, visitor areas and office spaces, are cleaned and sanitized to meet the highest standards for hygiene and safety. The Y has also modified policies and programs to facilitate safe social/physical distancing practices.
“When we closed our facilities in March, we did so to protect the health and well-being of all our staff, volunteers, members and participants,” Saunders said. “As we now reopen our facilities, we do so with that same commitment to keeping everyone who enters our doors safe.”
In addition to the other precautions, the YMCA is not currently selling guest passes, and usage is limited to YMCA members in order to control capacity and social distancing measures. Also in recognition of the challenges and changing economic climate in the community, the YMCA is no longer charging the joining fee for new members and has streamlined the scholarship assistance program to allow for a quicker approval time.
Scholarship assistance is available for YMCA membership and programs based on documented income and household size. Applications are available at the YMCA and on the Y’s website. Finally, gymnasium usage will be limited to one adult with children from the same household and they must bring their own ball. Those under 18 must be accompanied by an adult from the same household.
“We are so excited to reopen our facilities to our community,” Saunders said. “More importantly, however, our Y has always been more than a building. Our Y is about people – people from all backgrounds and walks of life who come together to improve their lives, nurture their families and strengthen their community. We are so incredibly grateful to the people who have stood by us throughout these challenging times. You were here for your community when it needed it most, and we remain here for you.”
Additional phases of reopening included/will include:
June 1: “Summer school age program,” (day camp). The YMCA started the summer school age program day camp on June 1 at the Y. Children who have completed kindergarten through sixth grade have started to enjoy a summer full of fun activities. This is a state-licensed program that has been recognized as a 3-Star “Step Up To Quality” site by the State of Ohio. Per state requirements the YMCA will be following the no more than nine children per classroom mandate. Children must be pre-registered and accepted into the program at least 24 hours prior to attending.
June 8: “Pickleball and Sports Academies.” Sports Academies will be limited to the first nine registered. Registration will be accepted beginning 48 hours in advance of each session. Check faycoymca.org for schedules.
June 15: Seniors Exercise Programs (MSROM, Enerchi, Dancing at the Y).
The YMCA indoor pool and locker rooms will remain closed through the end of August due to a number of restrictions in the Director’s Orders from the State of Ohio that do not make it feasible at this time. Additionally, an announcement about the opening of child watch services for children of members will be forthcoming based on availability of staff. The YMCA Kid’s World of Learning (KWOL) at Sugar Creek also continues operations. The site serves infants through pre-K and is also following new ratios mandated by the state. The YMCA KWOL is a 5-Star Step Up to Quality site.
For more information about schedules, reopening, membership renewal and reactivation and program registration, visit faycoymca.org or call 740-335-0477.