YMCA Kicking off Strong Kids Campaign
The organization hopes to raise $20,000 Wednesday night.
The Somerset County YMCA will be launching its 2012 Strong Kids Campaign with a special carnival Wednesday at the Bridgewater location on Garretson Road.
According to a release from the YMCA, the program hopes to raise $250,000 this year to continue its Strong Kids program to help those who may not ordinarily have access to the activities the organization offers.
Wednesday will be the YMCA's "Under the Bridgewater Big Top," the release said, and will include side-show games, carival entertainment and a dunk tank with swim coaches Matt Donovan and Brian Greene.
The release said the YMCA is hoping to raise $20,000 during Wednesday's kick-off.
So far, for the program, the staff at the Bridgewater, Hillsborough and Somerville branches have pledged $20,000, while the trustees have pledged an additional $11,800.
"Our staff's contributions show that they believe in and support our mission," said Paul Kieltyka, CEO of the Somerset Valley YMCA, in the release. "To them, the Y is more than a job."
The financial contributions, the release said, help the YMCA offer reduced-price membership and programs to families who might be dealing with limited incomes.
In 2011, according to the release, the program used more than $225,000 it had raised for financial assistance and scholarships for 115 families for daycare, summer camps, sports activities and other programs.
"We're counting on our generous donors, who include individuals, families, corporations and foundations, to make this year's campaign our strongest ever," Kieltyka said.
According to the YMCA, the Somerset Valley YMCA, through its three facilities, serves about 10,000 members, 450 of whom receive reduced memberships. From there, about 300 children enjoy child care services from 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. in Hillsborough and Somerville, 20 percent of whom receive financial assistance.
Through donations, the YMCA offers swimming, sports activities and other programs, as well as summer camps for more than 1,100 children, about 98 of whom receive scholarships.