YMCA breaks ground on new children’s center building

Assemblymember Ed Chau and YMCA Board President Barbara Messina break ground for the new YMCA building. They are surrounded by U.S. Rep. Judy Chu, Alhambra Mayor Adele Andrade-Stadler, Alhambra City Councilmembers Jeff Maloney and Kathryn Lee, San Gabriel Vice Mayor Denise Menchaca, former San Gabriel Mayor Mary Cammarano, Rosemead Mayor Margaret Clark, YMCA Board members Joe Pavon and former Alhambra Mayor Mary Louise Bunker, APD Assistant Chief Dan Rodriguez, AFD Battalion Chief Ed Guerrero, AEF President Steve Perry, Alhambra City Manager Jessica Binnquist, Alhambra Chamber CEO Sharon Gibbs, AUSD Superintendent Denise Jaramillo, and Henry Lo, chief of staff for Mr. Chau.

Ground breaking for the YMCA’s Children’s Center took place July 30 at the Y’s facility at 401 Corto St., Alhambra. The event was an opportunity for the Y’s CEO Valarie Gomez and Board President Barbara Messina to thank all those who supported the efforts to bring the Children’s Center into being. Also present were Assemblymember Ed Chau, U.S. Rep. Judy Chu, and many other dignitaries.

Sitting up front were more than 100 children from the Y’s Summer Day Camp. Many of these children will benefit directly from services in the Children’s Center. By this time next year, the building will house the facilities that will provide needed services to residents of the West San Gabriel Valley.

Mr. Chou is a member of the YMCA of West San Gabriel Valley. When visiting the Y, he learned of the work it was doing in support of the underprivileged in the community. Those services include affordable day care, subsidized membership, scholarships to summer day camp and Camp Ta Ta Pochon, and more.

The 24% increase in the homeless population in the San Gabriel Valley does not reflect the new face of homelessness; families with children are often invisible and uncounted. The YMCA of WSGV and its community partners strive to ease this growing distress.

Mr. Chou brought this to the attention of the Department of Education in Sacramento. He told them of the Y’s 14 years of year-round support of the West San Gabriel Valley’s children in need, the Y’s support of Alhambra Unified School District’s Gateway to Success, and their enduring commitment to provide a year-round safe haven for Gateway trauma exposed children. He told them how much more the Y could do with a building dedicated to serving low income families and especially their children.

As a result of his efforts, the state Department of Education approved expenditure for the entire amount requested and for the first time ever, gave a public grant to a YMCA. The $1.82 million dollar grant will make possible the construction of a new Children’s Center that will include private dressing rooms and showers for families, facilities for doing laundry, a commercial grade kitchen for cooking, cooking lessons, and much more.

However, the grant is for a structure only. Programs and equipment will still need to be purchased and funded. To learn how to contribute to the work of the new YMCA of WSGV Children’s Center, please contact CEO Valarie Gomez at Val.ymca@gmail.com, or call 626-660-6681.


YMCA Children's Centergrantsupportgroundbreakinghomeless populationsafe haven

Nov 2021


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