Community forums organized by Waukegan Township Supervisor Patricia Jones aimed at keeping the YMCA in Waukegan open beyond Dec. 31 are scheduled to continue on an almost weekly basis until then.
These Friday morning meetings -- held at Park Place Senior Center, 414 S. Lewis Ave., Waukegan -- are a forum for community leaders and concerned citizens to show their support, exchange ideas and receive updated information from YMCA officials. Committees such as Sports, Faith Community, Moms & Children and Seniors have been formed to seek support from various segments of the community. Interested persons are invited to join these committees.
Future "Save the Waukegan Y" community forums are scheduled for Nov. 16, Nov. 30, Dec. 7, Dec. 14 and Dec. 28 at 10 a.m. at Park Place.
The forums began shortly after the Sept. 28 announcement that Lake County Family YMCA branches in Waukegan and Vernon Hills would close Oct. 31 due to insufficient financial resources to sustain operations on an on-going basis. They continued with a new sense of purpose following the Oct. 31 announcement that the Waukegan Y would remain open through the end of this year to afford the community the opportunity to work together with the YMCA staff to develop a plan to establish long-term sustainability for the Northern Lake YMCA and the continuation of Y services in Waukegan.
Plans to keep Waukegan branch open for two more months followed an announcement that Lake County Family YMCA, the Village of Vernon Hills and the Park District of Vernon Hills had reached an agreement for the Park District to acquire and operate the Central Lake YMCA in Vernon Hills. At the start of next year, the Park District would assume operation of the facility. Because of the complex nature of the Lake County Family YMCA's financial situation, the agreement is subject to final legal and financial reviews. In the meantime, YMCA programs and services are being provided the Central Lake branch.
For updated information on efforts to maintain YMCA services in the Waukegan area beyond Dec. 31, or to find out how you can help, visit www.ymcalakecounty.org.
The Lake County Family YMCA is a cause-driven nonprofit that strengthens the community through programs and services that foster youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Chartered in 1912 as a 501 (C) 3 nonprofit, our association is comprised of the Central Lake YMCA in Vernon Hills and Northern Lake YMCA in Waukegan. To learn more, visit www.ymcalakecounty.org