Important News & Updates

Summer Camp in Madoc in Partnership with Centre Hastings
June 18, 2024

Thanks to the creation of a new partnership between the Municipality of Centre Hastings and the YMCA of Central East Ontario an 8-week Summer Day Camp will be coming to Centre Hastings for the summer of 2024. The upcoming camp will run 5 days a week throughout July and August and offer much needed childcare spaces and exciting and fun recreational provision for local children in the Centre Hastings area.

Click here for full media release.

Balsillie Family Branch Renovation Notice
October 24, 2023

The YMCA of Central East Ontario is a mission and values based organization committed to serving, enhancing and impacting the lives of people in our community. We provide opportunities for individuals and families to meet friends, strengthen family bonds all while focusing on health and wellness.

As a staff team we have a responsibility to change and adapt to meet the growing and ever changing needs of our community. We strive to create and deliver programs that will serve more people, impact more lives, will improve the financial health of the organization, and will enhance the long-term sustainability of the YMCA of Central East Ontario.

We are a solution-based charitable organization, and we look for opportunities where we can have a positive impact on our community. There are a number of challenges facing our communities, including a lack of licensed childcare for working families and employment.

Our YMCA was recently presented with an opportunity to increase our capacity to serve more children in the area of licensed childcare. The opportunity was to convert current space within our Balsillie Family Branch into a licensed childcare with costs of the renovations being covered by the Ministry of Education, funds that are managed by the Municipality with the stipulation that the funds be utilized and renovations completed by December 31, 2023.

We will be repurposing the multi-purpose room into a new licensed childcare space and repurposing at least one of the squash courts to a new multi-use space. We understand that there is a dedicated group of long term squash players and members who love the game of squash. We sympathize with you; nonetheless, this is change that we have decided to pursue for the overall health and growth of our organization.

Re-purposing current Multi-Purpose Room
Repurposing our current multi-purpose space will allow for our YMCA to open a new licensed childcare area that will serve 24 children everyday. We can provide care, impact the development of young children by giving working families comfort in knowing their children are in a high-quality affordable childcare centre. As well as and the creation of a number of new employment opportunities.

Re-Purposing the Squash Courts
The squash courts will in turn be used for some of our current programs being offered in the multi-purpose room and allow us to create one or two additional program spaces. This will allow us to expand our program options in our employment centre, serve more children in our summer day camp programs, and introduce new and additional health and wellness programs for children, youth, and adults.

Unfortunately, this space cannot be used for anything other than squash; the echo and sound are not conducive to using it for any other programs and currently can only be used by two people at any given time.

There has been a gradual reduction of squash courts in the local area over the last 20 years. In our view, it reflects the ever-changing nature of sports and leisure activities in our society. Our organization must stay current, relevant, and always be open to the changing needs of our community and citizens.

November 2023
Our work will begin on November 1st with the conversion of the outside squash court (number three) into a multi-purpose room. This will allow us to move the programs currently running in the multi-purpose room into the new space.

We will begin the re-purposing of the Multi-Purpose Room into a licensed childcare with completion in December 2023 with a planned opening in January 2024.

Fall 2023
We will evaluate the functionality of the new multi-purpose room space and determine what additional space will be required for programs and services and what amenities are required to run these programs. The plans for squash court number two have not been finalized. We have met with our squash volunteers to discuss our plans and have agreed that we will investigate the ability to make squash court number two a shared programming space (to be used for programming primarily and squash) and determine if this is a logical solution.

Our original renovation plan was to replace the wall between the two courts with a movable divider wall so the room has the ability to be used as one large room (similar to the size of the current multi-purpose room) or converted into two smaller rooms. This option will continue to be considered.

Winter 2024
Communication will be shared in regard to squash court two and the plan for moving forward.

We apologize for how quickly this transpired and the short notice we are able to provide. These timelines are bound by our funding agreement with the municipality. We have made this decision with the organizations’ long-term sustainability and financial health in mind.

We do sympathize with our squash players and members who have been with us for a very long time and we understand your commitment to a game that you love and have a passion for.

Leading Equitable and Accessible Delivery (LEAD)
January 19, 2023

New year, new goals! A consistent goal here at the YMCA is to improve the overall inclusivity of our facilities, and programs. Our team is excited to be heading into 2023 working alongside the Abilities Centre and the Canadian Disability Participation Project (CDPP) on a process titled Leading Equitable and Accessible Delivery (LEAD).

Through an evidence-based lens, the LEAD process will support our YMCA as we reflect on the internal practices, processes and culture of our organization so that strategic planning and implementation take place through the lens of accessibility and inclusion. Going through LEAD will challenge us to look beyond the accessibility of the built environment, or legislated compliance standards, to question and change our internal systems and policies that do not promote access and inclusion. This exciting process will take place over the next 12 – 14 months.

There will be opportunities for you to get involved along the way. We will be asking YMCA members, volunteers, staff and community partners to participate in a few surveys throughout the year. Stay tuned for updates!