YMCA receives $7,500 grant

Published 4:13 pm Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Atmore Area YMCA recently received a $7,500 grant from the Alabama Historical Commission, and plans to use the money to upgrade its heating and air-conditioning systems.

The Atmore Area YMCA received the funding from the commission’s 2015 Capital Enhancements Grant Program, which helps maintain historical buildings throughout the state. The YMCA is located in a building that previously housed Escambia County High School, and was the site of the first county public high school in the entire state.

“We believe this [grant] will make a tangible impact and contribute to the preservation of Alabama history in your community,” said Dr. Stephen McNair, director of historic sites for the Alabama Historical Commission, in a letter to Atmore Area YMCA CEO Paul Chason.

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Chason said that the YMCA plans to use the funding to replace a 25-year-old air-conditioning unit in the after-school program room. He also hopes there will be enough funding leftover to make some improvements in the first-floor duct system, which could help warm the air in the downstairs bathrooms and halls.

Chason especially thanked Tonya Lambert, at United Bank, for her assistance with the grant application.

“All I did was sign my name,” Chason said. “Tonya did a wonderful job, and put a lot of time and effort into coordinating this process. She did a lot for us behind the scenes, and we appreciate it.”

State Rep. Alan Baker met Chason on Thursday, to officially notify him that the YMCA had received the grant.