In Celebration of Leadership
Before an enthusiastic crowd of community leaders, YMCA volunteers, members and others, the YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown formally opened its Center for Youth and Teen Leadership.
“This center is part of our response to a community need – to create a safe and healthy space for tweens and teens in our area,” said John Harris, President and CEO of The Granite YMCA. “We’re thrilled to open this center to our community and recognize the many volunteers, donors, foundations and others who helped make this new center a reality.”
Housed on the YMCA’s ground floor, the new state-of-the-art center will provide a broad spectrum of services and programs aimed at area youth. Programs include:
- Leadership development, training, college and career support
- Healthy lifestyles
- Academic support, tutoring services and mentoring
- Positive peer interactions
Educational and exercise programs will be also be offered and The Center will serve as a meeting place for the Y’s Teen Leaders Club and other groups.
During school hours, The Center will serve a dual purpose by serving as a site for many of the Y’s Life Long Wellness Programs, which are aimed at active older adults. According to Mr. Harris, another key element of the new center would be multi-generational offerings in which teens collaborate with older adults in a range of activities. “These elements and others truly represent a win-win for those we serve.”
Other amenities at the new Center will be computer workstations, a game room and a working kitchen.
Gail Houle, Chair of the Advisory Board of the YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown said that the planning process for the new center began several years ago. “The opening of this center marks the realization of a dream to expand our space and program offerings for youth, teens and seniors in our community.”
According to Bob McKenney, Branch Director at the YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown, the center will serve over 1,000 area teens and hundreds of seniors. “We’re going to be busy right off the bat with camp programs and other activities with things really ramping up in September with the start of the school year.”
The Center’s opening culminates a multi-year Capital Campaign that involved multiple facets, said Leslee Stewart, Vice President of Development at The Granite YMCA. “Funding for this important project came from a broad range of sources,” she said. They include: the YMCA’s “Where Lives Change” capital campaign, a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), and grants from the Cogswell Benevolent Trust, Dartmouth Hitchcock, The McIninch Foundation, The Langley Family, USI Insurance Services, Hannaford Supermarkets, Citizens Bank and a host of other generous donors. “Volunteer committees, boards and others worked tirelessly behind the scenes to move this exciting project forward,” she said.
In addition to Ms. Houle, Mr. Harris and Mr. McKenney, speakers at the event included Katy Easterly Martey, Director of Economic Development for the CDFA and teen leader Nakita Bhat.
Dennis Mires, The Architect, designed the new Center project, which was built by Harvey Construction of Bedford. Interior design services were provided by Stibler Associates.
To learn about the center, please contact Karen Provost at the YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown at (603) 497-4663.
Photo Credit: (L-R) Denise Langley, Board of Trustees Chair and Elise McCaffrey and Wayne Robinson, YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown Advisory Board members.
Photo Credit: Ribbon cutting (L-R) Leslee Stewart-VP of Development, The Granite YMCA; Toni Pappas-Hillsborough County Commissioner; Bob McKenney-YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown Branch Director; Denise Langley-Chair of The Granite YMCA Board of Trustees; Nakita Baht-Teen Leader; Gail Houle-Chair of the YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown Advisory Board; Elise McCafferty, member of YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown Advisory Board; John Harris-CEO of The Granite YMCA; Katy Easterly Martey- NH Community Development Finance Authority; Michelle Goodnow-YMCA Allard Center of Goffstown Associate Branch Director.
About The Granite YMCA
As one of the state’s longest standing and most enduring non-profits, The Granite YMCA focuses on youth development, healthy living, social responsibility, and family strengthening. Across the state, its six branches engage 30,000 men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to improve their health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. In 2016, The Granite YMCA provided financial assistance and free services valued at over $1.63 million to 19,872 individuals. To learn more, please visit www.graniteymca.org.