Dear Members and Participants,
In this unprecedented scenario of an Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, and the Government order for total closure of schools and non-essential services, the YMCA has closed ALL of our facilities with immediate effect, with the exception of Accommodation which will continue to offer a caring and safe harbour for around 70 students and travellers.
It is a surreal situation for all of us. For our older adults who are home alone we will keep in touch through virtual means. For our young people we will set up virtual projects and discussion groups to keep their creative critical minds working to reduce anxiety, boredom and worry. For our awesome international volunteers now ‘stuck’ in isolation (together) at Wainui Park, we will keep their fitness and spirits high. For the backpackers stranded in the City Y – as of tomorrow they will have the run of our whole facility in their own quarantine – no excuse not to have a gym workout every day! These are small things but our empathy for the enormity of being in this situation when away from close family and friends is huge and overwhelming. When the YMCA faces community disaster, the YMCA is well placed to provide practical solutions. Even in these utterly unprecedented times.
The YMCA is a charitable trust which exists to serve our community. Anything our customers and supporters can do personally to preserve the YMCA’s ability to support our staff and our people will be much appreciated – particularly in the context of so much economic worry. This could mean maintaining your membership, relinquishing the right to a refund, or making a donation.
I remain optimistic about the ability of Aotearoa New Zealand, and particularly the Christchurch YMCA community, to get through this with our belief in humanity intact.
With best wishes for your family and friends during this time,
Josie Ogden Schroeder