EASLEY — The YMCA of Easley, Pickens and Powdersville kicked off its annual campaign on Thursday morning to share the exciting work being done in the community as the organization looks to exceed its fundraising goal for the fourth consecutive year.
The 2018 goal of $250,000 will fund mission driven programs like the Y Mentor Program, free swim lessons for students at McKissick Academy of Science and Technology and “Buddy Basketball” — a program for youth with special needs.
Donated funds also help those in the community who need a little help financially, said a spokesperson for the Y.
“Scholarships are made available for programs like summer camp, swim lessons, after school, membership and sports,” they said.
According to the organization, in 2017, the YMCA of Easley, Pickens and Powdersville provided over $300,000 in programs and services to the community.
“The foundation of the YMCA, from its beginning over 170 years ago, is to meet the most pressing needs of the community,” CEO Sid Collins said. “Our mission is to impact this community around youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. We do this with life changing programs like Y Mentoring and providing financial assistance so that everyone — regardless of financial ability — can be a part of this powerful YMCA movement. We are thankful for our many corporate and individual donors for providing us the opportunity to have this type of lasting impact on our community.”
One of the most influential and impactful programs available continues to be Y Mentor, they said.
The Y Mentor Program supports at risk youth by providing positive adult mentors to ensure every child has an opportunity to envision and pursue a bright future.
Mentors are currently in 38 schools in Pickens County and Anderson One, and Mentors commit to meet with their mentee for 30 minutes one day a week for one school year, they said.
“The Y Mentor program makes it possible for children to have a hope for a brighter future by having a champion in their corner,” Pickens County Y Mentor Director Cindy Perry said.
“The Y is a significant force in the upstate because it is addressing some of the biggest challenges that face our future,” they said. “From engaging the achievement gap with Camp iRock and Y Mentoring, to serving over 12,600 members to live healthier lives or by providing financial assistance to those in need to give them an opportunity to be a part of something powerful in the community, the YMCA is so much more. Every day, our community faces new challenges that create a greater need for the work we do. YMCA donors, volunteers, members and partners help make this happen.”
For more information about the YMCA of Easley, Pickens and Powdersville visit www.pcymca.net.
Reach Kasie Strickland at 864-855-0355.