Local YMCA Looking to Future Expansion

YMCA executives Richard Krauland and Jack Clevesky discuss a new fund-raising campaign scheduled for 2019 last Monday on the WTYM morning show “David & Friends”.

The Richard G. Snyder YMCA in Kittanning has concluded one of the most successful annual campaigns of gathering donations that fund programs offered by the Y. But CEO Jack Clevesy said the future of the YMCA has more to be done.

Clevesy said when he came to the YMCA several years ago, his first effort was to evaluate the strategic plan to make sure the YMCA was offering programs that were essential elements of the local community.

Clevesy said that through research, there were six things that needed addressed: (1) Youth and Adult Obesity; (2) Erosion of Social and Emotion supports resulting in negative youth behaviors; (3) Changing Family Structures; (4) Lack of programs for troubled youth; (5) Chronic Disease (Parkinson’s, Arthritis, Cardiovascular, and Cancer); and the need for affordable housing that addresses the homeless population and drug abuse prevention.

“We are headed on the third year of this plan,” Clevesy said last Monday on the WTYM morning radio show. “We have delivered everything within the plan that the Board and the community put together.”

Clevesy said the goal of the RGS YMCA campus is to be a state-of-the-art, multi-generational hub for the entire community. To accomplish the goal, the staff is once again researching the possibility of expanding the facility.

“We knew from the time the Y was built, we would need a bigger gym,” Richard Krauland added. “The membership has doubled in the last few years to 4,000 card-carrying members. We need more lanes on our swimming pool. We need a track around the gym. There are a lot of physical improvements that are needed to serve the membership. We have identified the needs of the community and we are going to try to make that happen.”

With the expansion of the indoor Aquatic center, Clevesy envisions increasing the partnerships with area schools, colleges, and businesses to offer specialized programs that will reach more audiences.

“It wasn’t the YMCA that decided it needed to expand,” Clevesy said. “These things were identified in a Community Needs Assessment that was done. We are now conducting a feasibility study starting with our Board during December, and then 100 business leaders in the community in January to make sure this expansion is attainable.”

Clevesy said those interested in finding out more about the study can contact him at the YMCA at 724-545-9622.