The following is a statement from YMCA of Coastal Georgia:
SAVANNAH, GA March 20,2020 – At the YMCA of Coastal Georgia, the safety and well-being of our members, staff, volunteers and the broader Coastal Georgia community have always been and will always be a top priority.
Today, following updated recommendations from the CDC, Governor Kemp, public school systems, our state and local health departments and City leadership, we are temporarily suspending all YMCA Member access and activities from our facilities and all of our fitness centers and pools with be closing. This is effective at 7 p.m. today, Friday, March 20, 2020 until at least March 31, 2020, with the exception of our Habersham YMCA which will remain closed through at least April 5, 2020.
During our suspension, we will actively work with local officials to keep our facilities available as needed to assist our school systems with child feeding programs and to coordinate with health care organizations for critical emergency childcare needs. We have already received requests from these groups to provide needed resources. It is our strong intention to resume all normal YMCA of Coastal Georgia operations as soon as possible
We understand this is a very concerning situation. The YMCA of Coastal Georgia has been a pillar of our coastal community for more than 165 years, throughout both good and challenging times. We will continue to monitor this evolving situation and will work with local officials to determine what future actions will be necessary.
During this closure, we will provide updates and information directly to staff, members and participants via email. We will also be posting information, access to digital fitness and family activities to our website and social media channels.
The YMCA of Coastal Georgia is announcing dedicated childcare services for Critical Professionals working to fight the COVID-19 virus and who are essential to the community fight against this global pandemic. Critical Professionals are those working the front line to protect, treat, diagnose and help stop the spread of COVID-19.
The YMCA of Coastal Georgia as partnered with the following hospitals and agencies, to serve their employees:
Memorial Health City of Savannah Police Department
St. Joseph’s/Candler Health System Savannah Fire Department
Effingham Hospital Chatham County Sherriff’s Department
Winn Army Community Hospital Chatham County Police Department
Liberty Regional Hospital Chatham Emergency Services
Southeast Georgia Health System Bryan County Emergency Services
East Georgia Regional Medical Center Bryan County Sheriff’s Department
Expert Urgent Care (Richmond Hill) Bryan County Police Department
Liberty County Police Department Bryan County Fire Department
Liberty County Fire Department Bulloch County Sheriff’s Department
Hinesville Police Department Bulloch County EMS
Hinesville Fire Department Statesboro Police & Fire Department
Glynn County Police Department Glynn County Fire Department
Glynn County Sheriff’s Department McIntosh County Sheriff’s Department
Darien Police Department City of Darien Fire Department
Tybee Island Police and Fire City of Pooler Public Health(Fire & Police)
“This is an extraordinarily challenging time for our community unlike anything we have ever experienced. The impact of school closures and the growing demand on our medical professionals and first responders is a great concern in our community. The Y want to make sure medical professionals and those on the front lines don’t have to worry about childcare and know that their children are in a safe place as they care for a growing number of our loved ones during this difficult time,” shared Joel Smoker, President and CEO of the YMCA of Coastal Georgia. “The Y exists to serve the greatest needs in the communities we share and we are pivoting our services to do our part during these unprecedented times.”
YMCA Staff are working closely with these community partners to share the registration information with their top priority employees through their Human Resources Departments. Y staff are also working closely with DECAL and the Department of Public Health to ensure the health and safety of both the children and the program and the staff who are working to care of them during this extraordinary time.
We are asking everyone to follow the guidance of local health and government officials, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines and take their own measures to protect themselves, including not putting themselves in situations with large crowds or where they come in close contact with others, staying home if they do not feel well, frequently washing their hands with soap and water and covering their coughs and sneezes.