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The Dodge City Family YMCA temporarily suspended all fitness, sports and aquatics programming on March 18.


The facility itself shut down for deep cleaning in accordance with Center for Disease Control guidelines. However, even with Gov. Laura Kelly issuing stay-at-home orders for non-essential means, the Dodge City Family YMCA continues to offer childcare for residents.


“Because of the evolving rules governing the coronavirus pandemic, the impact of school closures, and the growing demand on medical professionals, grocery store employees, government staff and other essential employees, we are continuing to offer childcare during this crisis,” said Dodge City Family YMCA executive director Jackie Regan. “We want to make sure the families in our community don’t have to worry that their children are in a safe place, as they continue to work to take care of our community at this time.


"We are partnering with Dodge City USD 443 to provide breakfast and lunch to these youth. We have limited spots available so we are encouraging parents to let us know as soon as possible if they are in need of childcare so that we can make sure we are able to provide for those that need it the most.”


In addition to childcare, the Dodge City YMCA is offering community outreach for seniors who need assistance with either groceries, basic errands or any other necessities.


"Our welcome center is taking calls during the day, and anyone in need can reach out to Karla Springer, our membership director," Regan said.


Springer can be contacted at 620-225-8157 or by email at kspringer@ymcaswkansas.org to set up times for assistance.


As the YMCA staff stays busy, workers are also getting the facility prepared for when given the all clear.


“Our goal is sometime in April, but that will all depend on how things develop over the next few weeks," Regan said. "We are being sure to follow all Kansas Department of Health and Environment, state and local guidelines at this time and we would rather be safe than sorry. We have a lot of vulnerable members that we want to be sure to protect.


“The Y is so much more than fitness centers and gyms, pools and locker rooms; we are a cause dedicated to strengthening and protecting the spirits, minds and bodies of our friends and communities.


“This is a time we need to pull together as a community and support each other, and that is an area the Y can thrive. We encourage community members to reach out to us at this time if they see a need the Y can help fill. We are here, and we want to help.”


To contact the writer email vmarshall@dodgeglobe.com