Enrichment grant gives boost to Y’s coffers

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 28, 2007

The Selma Times-Journal

The YMCA of Selma-Dallas County recently received $20,000 in American Red Cross Youth Enrichment Activities Program Funding for its Summer Day Camp.

The United Ways of Alabama notified the Y of the much sought-after honor in a letter dated June 25.

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Kim Hutchison, Y chief executive officer, said youth enrichment funds afford the Y the opportunity to serve youth in surrounding counties displaced as a result of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma.

The Y is now serving 15 evacuee youths a week, ranging from age 3 to 16.

“We’re very excited to be able to serve these kids,” Hutchison said on Wednesday, adding the youths are involved in swimming, canoeing and archery.

In addition to the various summer activities, Hutchison said the youths are taught the Y’s five core values – Respect, Responsibility, Honesty, Caring and Faith – and will participate in the Camp Grist experience.

“We’ve also incorporated some tutoring and reading programs to get them ready for school in the fall,” Hutchison said.

The youth enrichment program was created to assist families who want their children engaged in structured summer camp activities, but may not be able to afford it due to their money constraints caused by the disaster.

“Parents need the summer camps so that they can work; children need summer camps so they can be safe and have healthy and enriching summer programming; summer day camp providers need resources and support so they can offer more camp slots and provide enriching summer programming for the evacuee youth that may otherwise not have this opportunity financially,” according to the United Way Web site.

For more information, call (334) 874-9622 or visit the Web site www.unitedway.org.