Investments in programs and facility to address on-going challenges in North St. Louis
The Gateway Region YMCA celebrated the grand reopening of the Bayer YMCA with a ribbon cutting ceremony this morning. Thanks in large part to the generous support of Bayer, the $2.5 million in renovations includes an expanded Early Childhood Education Center (ECEC) and Teen Tech Center, a community kitchen, expanded health and wellness services, and a new family changing room.
“The upgrades we’ve made to the Bayer YMCA help address critical challenges in the north city area,” said Tim Helm, president and CEO of the Gateway Region YMCA. “We are thankful for Bayer’s ongoing support in working with us to provide more programs and services to better serve our community.”
“In recent months, the St. Louis region, like many other communities across the country, have seen an increased need to provide access to services that will be in place at the new Bayer YMCA,” said Al Mitchell, Vice President of Corporate Engagement for Bayer. “Bayer is proud to partner with the YMCA on this project which furthers our commitment of ensuring ‘Health for All, Hunger for None’.”
The full list of renovations at the Bayer Y are as follows:
1. Expanded Early Childhood Education Center (ECEC) & Teen Tech Center. Youth of all ages continue to struggle to find safe, constructive places in the community. The ECEC, after-school activities, and improved summer camp programs provide more opportunities and exposure to STEM activities in a safe and nurturing environment.
2. Community Kitchen. According to the CDC, rates for overweight and obese residents over age 16 in the City of St. Louis is 61 percent. A modernized Community Kitchen and expanded community garden provide more education and food outreach in a community recognized as a “food desert” and in need of healthy eating resources.
3. Expanded health and wellness services. According to the CDC, the national median prevalence of individuals diagnosed with diabetes is 10 percent, with the City of St. Louis at 13.5 percent. An expanded fitness area and new fitness programs allow more individuals to take part in the Y’s Blood Pressure Self-Monitoring, Diabetes Prevention and other chronic disease prevention programs to meet growing community needs.
4. New family changing room. These facilities provide a safe and constructive environment for families with young children, and ensure the Y continues to be a place For ALL.
This is the first of four other significant renovations planned by the Y in the coming months in the region as part of its multi-year capital campaign aimed at bridging the opportunity gap, connecting communities, and cultivating health equity.
About the Gateway Region YMCA
The Gateway Region Y is a nonprofit organization, featuring 24 traditional Y branches in Missouri and Illinois, along with the Campus Y student leadership facility at Washington University, and the Community Development YMCA. This also includes YMCA Camp Lakewood and Trout Lodge in Potosi, Missouri. The Carondelet Park Rec Complex and O’Fallon Park Rec Complex are owned by the City of St. Louis and operated by the Y. The Y is committed to serving people of all abilities. For those who qualify, the Y offers financial assistance so everyone has the opportunity to participate in Y programs, regardless of ability to pay. The Y is a proud member of the United Way of Greater St. Louis.
Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the life science fields of health care and nutrition. Its products and services are designed to benefit people by supporting efforts to overcome the major challenges presented by a growing and aging global population. At the same time, the Group aims to increase its earning power and create value through innovation and growth. Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development, and the Bayer brand stands for trust, reliability and quality throughout the world. In fiscal 2019, the Group employed around 104,000 people and had sales of 43.5 billion euros. Capital expenditures amounted to 2.9 billion euros, R&D expenses to 5.3 billion euros. For more information, go to www.bayer.com.