(From Findlay Family YMCA)
The Findlay YMCA welcomed Rep. Jon Cross (R-Findlay) along with other local organizations Thursday morning for a press conference announcing significant investments in the community.
Of the funds committed, the Findlay Family YMCA will receive $1.25 million towards the construction of the new YMCA Early Learning Center.
This funding is part of the One-Time Strategic Community Investment Fund included in House Bill 2 passed by the Ohio House of Representatives on Wednesday.
The YMCA will continue to work with State Senator Robert McColley (R-Napoleon) on securing additional funding for this important community project as this legislation is considered by the Senate later this spring.
“A vibrant, modern city with beautiful things deserves a beautiful YMCA and child learning center,” said Cross.
“This investment in the Findlay YMCA provides a high-quality childcare option for families, simultaneously supporting child development and uplifting working parents.”
Rep. Cross, whose family recently moved to Hancock County from Kenton, has been a long-time supporter of the Findlay YMCA and Phase 1 of the capital campaign, the Early Learning Center.
Recognizing the urgent need for action on Hancock County’s childcare crisis, Rep. Cross in partnership with his colleague, Sen. McColley, have previously secured state dollars for this project.
“The YMCA’s Early Learning Center will be transformational for our community now and for generations to come,” YMCA CEO, Stephanie Parsons, said.
“Not only will the Y have a new, innovative facility that is designed to help kids thrive, we’ll also increase our capacity to care for more children allowing more parents, caregivers, and guardians the opportunity to seek employment in our community.”
Currently in Hancock County, there are more than 600 kids on waiting lists for childcare and 82% of area business leaders report that their business has been at least moderately affected by the childcare crisis. Nearly 30% of Hancock County residents report a lack of childcare impacting their ability to work on at least a monthly basis.
Also speaking at the conference was Findlay YMCA’s Child Development District Director, Kari Redman. Redman has worked in the field of early childhood development for over 25 years and emphasized the importance of this project.
“Our children are destined for greatness — investing in our children is the best investment we can make in our community.”
The Findlay YMCA will be hosting focus groups to gather input and feedback from the community as part of the capital development planning process.
A specific focus group on YMCA childcare is scheduled for February 21st from 6-7:30 PM.
Those interested in participating are encouraged to contact YMCA Development Director, Sierra Hutton at [email protected].