Keeping Our Community Informed
Stronger Together: A Message from Channel Islands YMCA President & CEO, Margo Byrne
For over 134 years the Channel Islands YMCA has served Santa Barbara and North Ventura County. Through fires, debris flows and economic downturns, your Y and community have weathered these challenges together. COVID-19 is another test of our community’s strength and resolve.
We appreciate all of you who continue to provide the much-needed support of the Y and community. We wanted to provide a brief update of the work the Y has been doing in the past few weeks.
Our community outreach has begun in earnest, starting with our partnership with the local food bank to hand out much-needed supplies to our community. We are also proud to begin offering emergency childcare for the many essential employees who are in need of assistance watching their children during the day, while they provide essential services to our community. We are continuing our outreach to the many older members of the Y with weekly wellness check phone calls.
Additionally, we are offering online virtual group exercise classes from a variety of Y sources such as Les Mills and Y360, with updates and more exercises available daily on our Virtual Wellness Page. We are also offering Facebook Live workouts as well as a variety of youth activities for parents to utilize. We will provide links to these programs below.
Thank you for your outpouring of support during this difficult time. We have heard from members who wish to keep their memberships active during the closure; we can’t thank you enough!
We will keep you posted about a re-opening date as we learn more from state and local officials. Thank you for doing your part to slow the spread of the Coronavirus. We appreciate the opportunity to serve you, and we wish you and your loved ones good health. We can’t wait to welcome you back to the Y!
Please find links to the programs and offerings below:
Virtual Wellness Page and online workouts: https://www.ciymca.org/virtual-workouts
Emergency Donation Page: https://www.ciymca.org/emergency-relief-donations
Childcare Inquiries please email Info@ciymca.org
Noah’s Anchorage Teens Crisis Center
EMERGENCY CHILDCARE FOR ESSENTIAL SERVICES
Throughout the Y’s history, we have been called upon in times of crisis, conflict, and strife to provide critical services. In the past few days, the Channel Islands YMCA has been contacted by emergency services about providing childcare for their mission-critical staff. Without schools in session, they cannot work; and without work, they cannot provide for their families or serve our community.
With the support and assistance of local community partners, the Y is prepared to offer full-day emergency childcare for first responders, law enforcement, hospital personnel, and other essential staff that must report to work. We will take extraordinary precautions in the provision of this service. Upon arrival, staff and children will receive a health screen, wash and sanitize hands, and remain in small groups of ten while also practicing social distancing.
Currently, the Channel Islands YMCA will be providing childcare at several sites including, Lompoc, Ventura, and Camarillo with Santa Barbara coming soon. Due to the restrictions established by state and local health agencies, space is limited.
Parents in need of care should express interest at email@example.com
Dear Friends and Partners,
The novel coronavirus/COVID-19 is an escalating concern in our community, across the United States and around the world. Our primary concern is for the health, safety and well-being of our staff, clients and community.
As of March 19, 2020, Noah’s Anchorage Youth Homeless Prevention Center and My Home, Transitional Living Program remain open. It is our intent to continue to provide services to our most vulnerable population – youth in crisis. All prescribed precautions to mitigate the spread of the virus are being taken. Staff cleans and sanitizes surfaces and common touch areas on a scheduled basis, all staff and clients thoroughly wash their hands. Facial tissue and hand sanitizer are readily available. Gloves are worn during the preparation of food. Facial masks N-95’s are available should clients or staff feel more comfortable. Our facility allows us to practice acceptable social distancing.
Available services at Noah’s include:
• Overnight shelter for youth up to the age of 18
• Showers for youth up to the age of 18
• Hygiene products and clothing
• Laundry services
• Personal property storage
• Crisis counseling for individuals and families (video conferencing available)
• Drop in hours for youth up to the age of 21 – 9:00am – 2:00pm, 7 days a week
The Center is located at: 301 West Figueroa St., Santa Barbara 93103
Crisis Hotline: 805-963-8775
Crisis Text: 805-698-6701
For the duration of the crisis it is in the best interests of our community to suspend Street Outreach Services and programming at the St. George Youth Center.
Thank you for your support and understanding as we continue to provide services to those most in need.
Dear Valued Member and Community,
Over the past 24 hours, the State of California has taken significant steps to keep the public safe as the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread throughout our state. Our priority as an organization is the health and wellbeing of our community, with that in mind, we will be closing all YMCA health & wellness locations, programs, and, childcare facilities effective March 17, 2020, at 8 pm through March 31, 2020. Our youth crisis services remain in operation at this point in time.
We will continually reassess our reopening date of April 1st as we have more information or direction from local health authorities. During this closure, we will be working to ensure our facilities are ready to reopen which will include conducting a deep cleaning and disinfecting.
All childcare programs remain closed in accordance with the closures of our local school districts. There will be no childcare fees due while operations are on hold. The Early Spring Program Session that includes offerings such as sports and aquatics, was scheduled to end on April 11th, has been canceled. Prorated credits will be applied to each account.
Since our inception in 1874, the YMCA has tackled many challenges. We have stepped up to serve as a shelter during fires and mudslides and offered childcare to our first responders and healthcare workers. Every day, we respond to the challenges of low-income families and individuals, help fight chronic disease and support our aging population. The COVID-19 crisis gives us a new opportunity to respond and we are looking at ways we can fill needed gaps in our community during this crisis.
We are facing a new challenge and we know the needs of our community will be great in the coming weeks. Please consider keeping your fitness membership active, our primary source of income, so we can continue our work. To make this choice, no additional action is needed on your part. If you do make the decision to put your membership on hold, you may request to do so by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, please identify which branch you belong to in your email. Keeping your membership active and donating to the YMCA will allow us to continue our work. In appreciation of your support, we will be offering “Y Bucks” to all our members upon reopening, more information to come.
As members, we care about your health and wellness. You are the heart of this organization, and we know how much you depend on the Y. We hope you understand how difficult this decision has been. We ask that you support each other and stay connected. Reach out to your fellow members and neighbors, especially those who may be isolated during this time.
We are committed to our members and community’s health so we have made virtual wellness options freely available to the community at this time, please visit our Virtual Wellness Page. You can also visit our new Facebook page to watch fitness-related videos and tips or keep up to date on the latest updates related to COVID-19.
The coronavirus has created enormous uncertainty; however, how we manage it is in our control. Join us in creating a history that demonstrates how we came together and served those who needed us the most.
Margo Byrne - President & CEO
Gail Anikouchine - Board Chair
CHANNEL ISLANDS YMCA
Dear YMCA Member,
We have two important operation changes to share with you today. Due to Governor Gavin Newsom’s voluntary request to have individuals over 65 stay away from public places, we have made the difficult decision to cancel all of our active older adult fitness classes (i.e. Silver Sneakers, Senior Water Fitness) and social programs for the time being.
On a more positive note, we are excited to announce that all our members now have access to a select number of our group exercise classes online. The newly created video library includes a variety of classes for all members. Now you can work out anytime and anywhere!
Please know your membership is important to us. We know your health is important and your workouts are a vital element to maintain a healthy lifestyle. We hope this new resource will allow you the ability to continue your workouts and maybe even try some new ones!
Here is how to get started:
Step 1: Click the link: https://www.ciymca.org/virtual-workouts
Step 2: Select your desired workout.
Step 3: Press play and begin!
We will update the video library with additional workouts as they become available. If you have questions regarding this information or any other programs, please contact your local Y.
We have been in touch over the past week to keep you informed about our response to COVID-19 (Coronavirus). We have been and will continue to closely work with local Public Health Agencies, the Center for Disease Control and other entities on updates and directives regarding COVID-19.
Information is continuously changing and in the last few days the Center for Disease Control labeled the COVID-19 a pandemic and today it was declared a national emergency.
The YMCA is facing unprecedented circumstances, and we are trying to navigate this evolving crisis. At this time, based on the recommendations we have received the following decisions have been made:
- YMCA events with over 250 people or where adequate social distancing cannot be provided will be canceled.
- Third-party rentals, guest passes, and Nationwide Membership visits will be suspended immediately.
- Early Spring Youth Programs & Winter Sports Leagues will be discontinued on Monday, March 16th. Prorated credit information will be provided for Early Spring Youth Programs via a separate email.
- Spring Sports Leagues will be postponed until after April 10th.
- Programs offered to any at-risk health populations including Livestrong will be postponed until further notice.
- Out of the abundance of caution, drop-in Childwatch Preschool, St. George Youth Center and Afterschool Programs will be closed for one week starting on Monday, March 16th for us to assess the situation further.
- Group Exercise classes will continue to operate but with reduced capacity to provide recommended social distancing of 6 feet. The YMCA will no longer provide certain group exercise tools like yoga mats or blankets.
- The week of March 16th capacity in fitness spaces will be decreased to provide social distancing recommendations of 6 feet.
At this point in time YMCA, health and wellness facilities and our youth crisis services remain open. Should changes to operations become necessary, we will notify you.
The YMCA is an organization built on the foundation of supporting and strengthening the communities we serve. In times of uncertainty or crisis, the YMCA has steadfastly remained the place for health in all aspects: physical, social, emotional, spiritual. We realize these changes are disruptive to our entire Y community. During these unsettling days, we want to reassure you we are doing everything we can to continually assess the situation and make decisions based on the facts we know.
HELP US KEEP ONE ANOTHER HEALTHY
While the CDC and World Health Organization report most infected individuals experience only mild symptoms and recover fully, members are encouraged to protect themselves and others through good hygiene practices.