CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The YMCA of Greater Charlotte announced plans this week for improvements to the McCrorey and Stratford Richardson YMCAs in west Charlotte as part of a major gift from philanthropist MacKenzie Scott.
Scott donated $18 million to Charlotte YMCAs in late 2020, marking the largest gift in the Y's nearly 150-year history. YMCA leadership said the funds from Scott's gift would be focused on health, youth development and equity initiatives in the Beatties Ford Road and West Boulevard corridors.
The McCrorey YMCA and Stratford Richardson YMCA will each receive new fitness equipment, enhancements to existing youth programs and new mental health initiatives. The McCrorey YMCA will also make improvements to its senior center and complete the Best Buy Teen Tech Center.
The Stratford Richardson YMCA will add afterschool programming for kids in the West Boulevard corridor, as well as reconfigured space to accommodate areas of group exercise and youth programs. The Y is partnering with Atrium Health to build a community health clinic at the YMCA using a $2 million federal appropriation that was secured by Rep. Alma Adams.
Stan Law, president and CEO of YMCA of Greater Charlotte, is a Charlotte native and West Charlotte High School graduate. He intimately knows the needs in the community.
“We know we have challenges throughout Charlotte around education, around health disparities, around food access, around literacy, and so we knew that those two YMCA’s and thus, those two communities were prime in terms of making this initial investment," Law said.
A task force made up of community leaders and volunteers worked to determine how to best utilize the funds. Only a portion of the $18 million gift is being used to fund these initial improvements.
“We are pleased to put plans in motion for the transformational investment in these two corridors,” Law said. “This is just the beginning; the needs in our community are significant. We plan to build more partnerships and leverage additional gifts to ensure we can sustain and expand our work in these corridors and in other areas of need throughout greater Charlotte over time.”
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