Fishers YMCA Campaign Breakfast: Strengthening Our Community
Writer / Janet C. Striebel
Supporting the YMCA is a positive way to start the New Year. This philanthropic organization has been around for 171 years focusing on youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility. The YMCA doesn’t just bolster bodies, it shapes the future of our community by taking on challenges such as the educational achievement gap, adult and childhood obesity, and diseases such as the diabetes epidemic.
“Many people don’t realize that the YMCA is a non-profit organization and we do fundraising,” says Jake Reardon-McSoley, Executive Director at Fishers YMCA. “I am excited to come to work each day to work towards our mission of awarding over $700,000 in scholarships to 7,200 folks and impacting so many kids and parents each year at Fishers YMCA…One misconception is that Hamilton County is a wealthy place but actually there are a lot of families living here who face great financial needs.”
Fishers YMCA will host its annual campaign breakfast on February 11th, 2016 from 7:15am-8:30am at 9012 E. 126th Street off of Highway 37. Guests will enjoy a delicious breakfast catered by local culinary celebrity, Chef Suzanne who appears weekly on WTHR Channel 13. (www.chefsuzanne.com) Former Indianapolis Colts punter Hunter Smith will be the guest speaker.
Another well-known personality, Tom Britt, will serve as the Master of Ceremonies, introducing each uplifting story about how Fishers YMCA has successfully strengthened our community. Britt represents a passionate community leader and publisher of the TownePost Network. (www.townepost.com)
Former Fishers YMCA staff member, Mike Conley, who attended Lawrence North High School and now plays for the Memphis Grizzlies, has been a longtime supporter of the YMCA annual campaign. He will share his story through a video feed. He could be a potential NBA all-star and has been on the ballot due to his talent. No matter what happens in the NBA, he remains an all-star with the YMCA after having been a deep-rooted supporter.
YMCA Mission Sampling
Since 2008, as part of the social responsibility mission, the YMCA leads a program called LIVESTRONG which helps cancer victims build and strengthen muscle mass, increase flexibility and endurance, and improve confidence and self-esteem. This 12-week program meets two days a week for 90 minutes and offers a caring staff trained to follow American College Sports Medicine and American Cancer Society exercise guidelines.
“LIVESTRONG focuses on healing and hope and is a very powerful program,” says Reardon-McSoley. “We’re proud to provide this program completely free for cancer survivor participants. This is important since we know the bankruptcy rate is two and a half times higher for cancer victims than it is for the rest of the community.”
In addition, to help offset the achievement gap, the YMCA offers a Preschool Program with a discounted rate that follows the USA Creative Curriculum model. This state-of-the-art course-plan uses computers and focuses on four types of development: social/emotional, physical, cognitive and language. Of the 131 children involved with this curriculum one out of four receive a financial scholarship.
Finally, to help address the diabetes epidemic, the YMCA has organized the Diabetes Prevention Program along with the help of the IU School of Health. Though it was first piloted at the Fishers branch it has grown nationwide due to its success.
The goal of this program is to reduce one’s body weight by 7% while increasing physical activity by 150 minutes per week. The best part of this process is that participants can work with others in a group setting, helping to support each other. They can make friends as they lose weight, boost their energy, reduce their risk for diabetes, and improve their health.
According to the National Institutes of Health the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program not only reduces the number of new cases of type 2 diabetes by 58% overall but also by 71% in people over 60.
Obviously, the YMCA is fundraising for the sake of the Fishers public well-being. After all, a healthy community is a happy one. Reardon-McSoley invites you to come share fellowship at the Fishers YMCA fundraising breakfast.
“We have a lot of powerful missions to carry out. The only way to strengthen our community is by carrying out these missions through the generous support of our donors. We have thousands who are leading a better life because of the time treasure and talent of our current donors.”
If you are unable to attend the breakfast but would like to donate to the annual campaign, please contact Jenny Lindbloom at 317-558-3203 or visit the registration site at http://www.eventbrite.com/e/fishers-y-annual-campaign-fundraising-breakfast-tickets-19799917085 (or go to Eventbrite.com and search for the Fishers YMCA).
Go to www.indymca.org for more information or to sign up for a program.