Ongoing financial troubles are among reasons why officials with the YMCA say they are closing branch doors permanently. Their issues also have been exacerbated by the ongoing pandemic.
Below is the full release from the South Bend-Mishawaka YMCA:
The YMCA of Greater Michiana is permanently closing the South Bend-Mishawaka YMCA branch effective Tuesday, May 26.
“As we navigate the COVID-19 health crisis, we must reimagine how to best serve the greater Michiana community,” said Mark Weber, CEO of the YMCA of Greater Michiana. “This means our YMCA has made the very difficult decision to permanently close this branch.”
The Y plans to continue partnerships with area businesses and organizations to provide programming that falls into its areas of impact, such as youth development and community wellness. The closure of this facility will not be the end of the Y’s presence in St. Joseph County.
“After extensive research and evaluation, we determined this physical location was not financially sustainable moving forward,” said Weber. “However, our work in the South Bend community is not done. We’re working on a business plan that will bring us wherever we are needed in the future.”
Local Y programs have continuously expanded outside of their physical locations, allowing them to serve the community in several ways, including working with local schools and meeting their needs for onsite before- and after-school programs that provide mentoring and a safe space for kids.
“While fitness centers are the face of the YMCA, we are uniquely capable of making an impact on the health and wellness of our community without a specific building or set of walls,” said Weber. “As a cause-driven organization, we only need passion, people, and commitment to continue serving and supporting our community.”
All South Bend-Mishawaka YMCA memberships will remain active through August 2020 at no charge. During this time, members may utilize alternate YMCA facilities including our Niles-Buchanan and Benton Harbor-St. Joseph branches upon their reopening. Additionally, your Y membership gives you access to most Ys nationwide.
The Y has been part of the South Bend and surrounding communities for over a century. Its current location of 1201 Northside Boulevard has housed the organization since 1964.
To learn more about the Y please visit ymcagm.org.