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YMCA would attract families, spark growth

Posted: January 20, 2012 8:57 p.m.
Updated: January 23, 2012 5:00 a.m.

Two and a half years ago my husband and I decided that it was time to plant roots closer to family. I grew up in a military family bouncing from place to place about every four years so picking the right time to move with minimal emotional repercussions for our daughter was important to us. Growing up, I tried to understand that my parents were making major sacrifices for our country and respected that. With that said, as a kid it always came down to the fact that it took a lot of effort to pick up and make new friends everywhere we went. As time went by the older I got the harder it was. I always struggled with trying to become a part of groups that had already been established because they had grown up together. One thing that made this easier for me as a young person was the opportunity to do extracurricular group activities through our local pool, schools and the YMCA. It gave me the self confidence I needed to put myself out there.

When my family moved to Camden two and a half years ago, the feelings of trying to make friends and become a part of the community reared its’ not so pretty head in full force. I worked a night schedule and my husband worked evenings so it was tough to meet people in the community. In addition to that, I found myself worrying that my daughter didn’t have the opportunities she needs to meet friends due to our schedules. Camden has so much charm and nice people but when you don’t have a “normal schedule” you struggle because you aren’t available when everyone else is. I strongly feel that a lot of this would have been alleviated if there were a facility like the YMCA that provided activities for groups of parents and kids during the week and on weekends. 

When my husband and I learned about the possibility of a YMCA coming to Camden we were excited. Not only would it provide exercise equipment and facilities, childcare, and after school programs, it would give us a chance for our daughter and ourselves to participate in group activities.

Looking to the future, I would love to see a Y come to Camden to open up such opportunities for young families. It will not only make our community more attractive to younger families, it would spur growth and stability for generations to come.

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