– A History of Helping: Open Doors at the YMCA

A History of Helping: Open Doors at the YMCA

The YMCA is much older than many people realize. For over 160 years, YMCA has been a “home away from home” for the community, and our goal has been to keep our doors open to all in the community regardless of their financial situation.

TEXT BLOCKIn the 1860s, the YMCA saw a need for safe and affordable housing for young men moving from rural areas to cities seeking employment. Facilities included gyms, auditoriums, and hotel-like rooms. Chicago’s Farwell Hall, the first known YMCA dormitory, was completed in 1867. Between 1922 and 1940, YMCA accommodations grew from approximately 55,000 rooms to more than 100,000, more than any hotel chain at the time. Since that time, the East Shore YMCA has maintained a residence hall which to this day provides affordable housing to 85 men, including homeless veterans in partnership with the YWCA.

TEXT BLOCK2Fundraising and supporting others is not just limited to what we do within our YMCA walls. The YMCA responded to several world crises—Sept. 11 (2001), Pacific Rim tsunami (2004), Hurricane Katrina (2005) and the earthquake in Haiti (2010)—through fundraising, rebuilding efforts and programs designed to rekindle hope in the affected communities, particularly among children and young people. In this way, we help to rebuild the communities in which we live and work.

Today, the YMCA is so proud to offer multiple solutions to the members of our community who need the services we provide, but fall on hard times and cannot meet their financial obligations to the Y.

TEXT BLOCK3In 2015, the Harrisburg Area YMCA provided financial assistance to 10,235 individuals and families throughout our service area, 63% of whom were children and youth. In membership alone, the YMCA provided over $200,000 worth of support to those who could not afford membership fees. In addition, over $125,000 in aid was awarded in child care and day camp scholarships to help struggling families in their search for daytime childcare solutions outside of school hours.

But what about those who want to join the Y, but don’t qualify for financial aid? Many times, with the burdens of everyday life, YMCA membership can seem like a luxury that is completely out of reach. With the Open Doors program at the East Shore YMCA, YMCA membership can extend further, and help you and your family take advantage of all the YMCA has to offer.

Open Doors membership is an East Shore YMCA only membership that gives you access to TEXT BLOCK4everything that our facility members enjoy. This includes our beautiful pool, aerobics classes, Wellness Center, and Child Watch while you work out. Some classes and amenities may be an additional charge, but we will help you navigate and learn more when you stop by the East Shore YMCA.

Qualifying for Open Doors membership is based off of your income. It is not a scholarship or financial aid, simply a membership option. If you choose to share your income, we can get you set up with the membership rate that you qualify for as quickly as possible.

Open Doors Rates:
Rates based on proof of income
Adult Single – Income of $31,000 or less per year: $27.99/month
Family Membership – Household incomes of $50,000 or less per year: $44.99/month

Are you ready to learn more? Sign up here to receive a special guest pass to learn more about the Open Doors program, and how the YMCA can help you and your family grow and thrive.

Stop by and see us! Learn more about Open Doors at the YMCA.

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