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Starting to Renew the WCY

Dear Friends,

Happy Spring!

Spring symbolizes renewal for me.  And that has been on my mind for months.  In my time here, I’ve seen  our Y grow tremendously, though for people who knew the WCY before 2020, it just feels more normal.  (We are approaching our pre-pandemic membership size and hope to be there within the year.)

As I’ve shared with you, since I started as CEO in September 2020, smack in the middle of the Pandemic, things at the WCY felt really different than they do now.  We had many fewer people coming in the doors.  We had trouble attracting people to our sports programs.  We had to close many programs, such as First Grade Swim Safety and Pedaling for Parkinsons, because they posed too much risk to participants.  The hallways were much quieter. In retrospect, it felt like we were dormant.

In just the last four months, I’ve felt the energy of renewal.  Evidence of more people in the building abounds:  Swimmers sharing lanes, spontaneous basketball games breaking out, full exercise classes.  The energy is palpable. 

All the people (and all the snow and power outages!) have exposed some areas for improvement.  When we redid our hot water system in 2016, we didn’t account for all the people we would need to accommodate.  As a result, showers can be lukewarm at times of high demand. We are looking into returning the system back to its original specifications. People track in mud and dirt, especially during the winter.  We have added custodial hours to keep things cleaner and are assessing when we need to add more.  We have added more hours and capacity for the Therapy Pool because we have more families who want to swim together.  And we are looking for the best places to add more. 

Some changes can be made quickly, others take more resources like time and money.  We are trying to take a long view about how to best renew the WCY rather than putting on “Band aids” that will have to be re-fixed often.

In Board meetings, we have started talking about how the WCY can continue to renew itself.  We are asking the questions:  What impact do we want to have?  What resources do we need to make that kind of impact? How do we use what we have in the most effective ways and what do we need to add?  Etc…

Your input and, eventually, your support will be critical.  In the next month, I will be asking for information from you.  Look for a survey link and feel free to drop by my office or send me an email. 

The renewal of spring is fairly rapid…  (Famous last words this year!)  The renewal of the WCY, though similarly joyous, will take a longer time.  We are just at the beginning!

Have a wonderful day, week, month!


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