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Ribbon cutting, facility expansion for Niles-Buchanan YMCA

Published: Oct. 12, 2021 at 11:37 PM EDT
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NILES, Mich. (WNDU) - Hundreds of students in our area will enjoy a new facility at the Niles-Buchanan YMCA, thanks to generous donors in our community.

People gathered for a ribbon cutting Tuesday afternoon to celebrate the completion of a 14,000 square foot addition to the Niles-Buchanan YMCA.

It has a new gym, fitness studio, new office space and a teen and youth center.

“...awesome opportunity for the teens of our community to be able to come here, hang out, have homework help and all kinds of programs to support them,” said COO of the YMCA Greater Michiana Denise Peters.

“It is beyond exciting. There is nothing more exciting than to see 100 kids running around down here playing and engaging in activities,” said CEO of the YMCA Greater Michiana Mark Weber.

Weber said the new facility will provide before and after school care.

“We know there’s a gap: out of school activities. We need to provide programs to support our schools as they prepare our kids for their futures...Kids are bussed here in the afternoon. Parents drop their kids off in the morning. School busses pick the kids up and take them to school,” Weber said.

There are also sports programs, youth government programs and mentoring programs.

“We’ve got partnerships with programs in St. Joe and Benton Harbor who don’t have space in this area to provide activities so we are allowing them to come down here for activities,” said Weber.

“To use our resources more efficiently and effectively with our community partners,” said Peters.

This project was $2.6 million.

There are scholarships available if kids are not able to afford memberships.

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