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The following is a press release from the Newport County YMCA.
As we reflect on this past year, the Newport County YMCA would like to take the opportunity to thank our members, donors and community partners for supporting us all year round. 2018 was a very big year for the Y; providing afterschool care for 125 students a week in Jamestown and Middletown, educating 58 students in our Twice As Nice Preschool, serving 150 adults a week, free of charge, with intellectual and/or physical disabilities through our Adapted Programs and Special Olympic Teams, as well as enriching the health and wellness of our Newport County neighbors through fitness, sports, swim and gymnastics.
On December 20, 2018, the Newport County YMCA closed on a deal to solidify our future in Newport County. The Y purchased the 8-acre parcel of land they sit on at 792 Valley Road in Middletown. This purchase will allow the Y to continue serving the Newport County community, and to pursue expansion and renovation opportunities, for decades to come. The Y would like to thank the Board of Directors of the Newport County YMCA, the Trustees of The John Clarke Trust, the Savings Institute Bank & Trust, Mike Miller with Miller Scott & Holbrook and David P. Martland, Esq. with Silva Thomas Martland & Offenberg LTD, for their support during this historic land purchase.
Since 1878, the Y has been serving Newport County, working side-by-side with our neighbors to make sure everyone, regardless of income or background, has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. At the Y, we strongly believe that lasting personal and social change comes about when we all work together to invest in our kids, our health, and our neighbors. The YMCA is recognized as the country’s leading nonprofit and is committed to strengthening communities through three focus areas: youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Newport County YMCA has over 6,500 members that range in age from birth to 85 years or older. Serving men, women, children and families of all ages, ethnic origins, religious affiliations, and socio-economic levels in Newport County, with a primary service area of Aquidneck Island. With programs that range from athletics to advocacy, dance classes to disease prevention, volleyball to volunteerism – “We’re more than a Gym, We’re a Cause.” The Newport County YMCA is committed to reducing financial barriers to participation and no one is turned away due to an inability to pay program or registration fees. The Y’s purpose is basic: to improve the quality of life of their members, families and community through meaningful health, wellness, and educational programs. The Newport County YMCA has been striving for 140 years not to be a community center, but rather, the center of the community.
“The Board of Directors of the Newport County YMCA is eternally grateful to the Trustees of The John Clarke Trust for seeing the importance of the YMCA’s mission in this community and agreeing to sell the land upon which our aging and expansive building has been sitting since the mid 1970’s. This purchase will allow the Y to now concentrate on an expansion and renovation plan for our building, which will better serve the community as the Y moves forward with its vision,” Lee Merrill, Board Chair, Newport County YMCA.
The vision for the Newport County YMCA was articulated by one if it’s first Board Chairs, in the late 1800’s, “The Y’s members are friends who have watched the wants of our city most closely and agree that we undertake nothing better than to furnish common meeting places for our members to promote sociability and general acquaintance by proper means, to make abundant provision for such recreation and exercises as health of body and mind demands”.
“Every day people of all ages and all walks of life come together at Newport County YMCA to grow healthier and stronger in spirit, mind, and body. We’ve been proud to help our neighbors learn, grow, and thrive for 140 years. Through the purchase of our land, the Y can continue to meet the needs of our community members. The Newport County YMCA Summer Camp will be renamed Camp Clarke starting in the Summer of 2019 as a thank you to this great visionary. We look forward to 2019 and continuing to serve our community for decades to come,” Mike Miller, CEO, Newport County YMCA.