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The YMCAs of Tampa Bay welcome back members with safety top of mind

The YMCAs of Tampa Bay are thrilled to be welcoming back families and getting back to what we do best – helping everyone reach their full potential. Although it’ll look a little different, members can now safely enjoy our child watch areas, family pools, youth sports and swim lessons in addition to our wellness centers and group exercise classes.

When the Y closed our facilities in March, we did so to protect the health and well-being of all our staff, volunteers, members and participants. Now that we’re back open, we keep that same commitment to keep everyone who enters our doors safe. Following guidance from the CDC and government officials, the Y updated its policies, practices and procedures to ensure the highest standards of cleanliness. We have also made appropriate accommodations for social distancing to create a safer environment as members get back to focusing on their health and their community at the Y.

As the state continues its reopening plan and as more and more people begin to interact with one another across our community, there is an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 in any public place where people are present. The Y is asking members and summer campers to practice these preventative measures and expect the following changes at their local Y:

  • Maintain 6 feet of distance between you and others.
  • Wear a face covering while indoors while not exercising. (ages 2+)
  • Wash/sanitize your hands frequently and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Disinfect equipment before and after use.
  • Fitness equipment is staggered to promote social distancing.
  • Number of participants in group exercise classes is limited.
  • Throughout the day, staff will temporarily shut down parts of the facility to deep clean and disinfect.
  • Those with pre-existing health conditions are recommended to stay home.

“While we can’t predict the long-term effects of COVID-19, we are committed to doing whatever is necessary to ensure the safety of our members and staff. The way we’ll interact with each other will be different, but at the Y, you’ll always be able to connect with people, improve your health and wellness, nurture your children’s potential and help strengthen our community,” says Matt Mitchell, Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA President & CEO.

The Y is committed to ensuring all people have access to the resources and support they need to thrive. The YMCA will continue to engage and serve all people where they are, including through virtual offerings and outreach services for those who continue to practice social distancing and those who need special support during these challenging times.

“Although we are back open, we encourage our members to return at their own pace and when they feel comfortable,” says Mitchell. “We care about our members and their well-being. The Y is more than a gym…we are a community.”

Kelli Biandudi and Lalita Llerena
Kelli Biandudi and Lalita Llerena
Kelli Biandudi and Lalita Llerena make up the communications team for the Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA and YMCA of the Suncoast. Coincidentally, before their communications careers, this pair worked together for a 24-hour local TV news team. When they aren’t promoting the good work of Y, they’re both busy exploring all Tampa Bay has to offer with their families.

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