Atmore needs to help the Y

Published 4:01 am Wednesday, November 19, 2008

By By Chandler Myers
The Atmore Area YMCA is in trouble. Okay, maybe not immediate trouble where they will be shutting their doors tomorrow or even in a year. But it is in trouble in 2010 when the W.T. Neal Trust stops the grants that they so graciously give out every year.
The Y needs help from people other than the trustees that donate money year in and year out. The Y needs help from the community that surrounds it.
The citizens of Atmore need to think about the city without the Y. Where will your kids go for summer camp or after school care if that is where you send them?
When there are not any soccer or basketball leagues for the children of Atmore, what will they do during the fall and winter. As much as it hurts, not every kid loves to play football. So, some kids like to play other sports instead, but if there isn’t a YMCA in the city they might not be able to play those sports.
How many places in town are there to work out at? Two come to mind and one of those is the Y.
Sure the economy is poor right now and a lot of people are hurting, but we all need to come together in certain times and saving an important institution as our local YMCA is worthy of our time.
In August, a story was written on the Y’s troubles and it was mentioned how much money has been donated by businesses and citizens in the community. While it is good that money has been given, the amount that it has received isn’t even enough to help it run for a month.
In today’s Advance, there is a story on the YMCA receiving an $85,000 grant. That grant is extremely important for the operation of the YMCA.
It helps fund the budget that executive director Tammy Graham and her staff hammer out at the beginning of each year. It includes a lot of things with some being major and others being smaller things.
No one is asking for $85,000 to be donated, but a donation here and there helps and really adds up over time.
The staff at the Y is doing its best to find alternative sources of funding so that the doors will never close, but it really needs help from the community.
So take the time to think about the important things that help this community.
The YMCA has done a great job for supporting this community and really could use that support back when it needs it most.
Guess we will see what happens in 2011. Hopefully, the community wakes up and helps or maybe the Y finds another trust. I hope its both.
Chandler Myers is sports editor of the Atmore Advance. He can be reached at 368-2123.

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