NORTH GRENVILLE, ON - At the April 4th meeting, North Grenville’s Council will discuss a Memorandum of Understanding that seeks to expand the Municipality’s successful partnership (since 2019) with the YMCA of Eastern Ontario - to include the management of North Grenville’s aquatic program, which is operated seasonally at the Kemptville Outdoor Pool.
This development is being led by the Municipality’s Parks and Recreation Team who have advised that this move will bring new levels of professional expertise to the already popular local offerings at our Municipal Pool.
Mayor Nancy Peckford remarked, “since 2019, the YMCA has been operating summer camp programming in North Grenville that has been well received by the community and fills an important need for school aged summer childcare. The camps also continue to provide meaningful summer employment opportunities for local youth.”
“The YMCA brings significant expertise to respond to the changing needs of children and families, and evolving Ministry requirements in childcare programming,” Mayor Peckford added. “In our view, expanding on this successful arrangement is significant value added for our community.”
Benefits of the partnership would include:
- Access to highly trained and seasoned management and expertise;
- Program subsidies for families to remove financial barriers – it should be noted that this option is brand new and a direct result of working with an established charitable organization;
- Continued employment opportunities for local youth, along with new training and advancement opportunities. The Municipality has been advertising seasonal recruitment for aquatics staff, and all of those applicants have been contacted for permission to share their application with the YMCA. Municipal staff will also work alongside the YMCA in the hiring process to support a smooth transition;
- A strong partnership with an established not for profit entity that may bring other partnership opportunities in the future.
As a leading provider of health and wellness services in United Counties of Leeds and Grenville, and Frontenac, the YMCA of Eastern Ontario is well positioned to be an important partner in the provision of health enhancement and wellness programs for the Municipality of North Grenville.
The structure of YMCA programming responds to community needs, including, but not limited to, health, fitness, recreation, children’s day camp, licensed child-care and youth leadership within the Leeds, Grenville, and Frontenac Regions.
“Strengthening our relationship with the YMCA Eastern Ontario allows us to offer more robust recreational programs now and creates the possibility of additional recreation amenities in the future,” says Deputy Mayor John Barclay.
According to Acting CAO Karen Dunlop, this arrangement is “an extension of the existing agreement which has already provided good programming for North Grenville.”
The Memorandum agreement for the aquatics program is set for a term of one year and will be reviewed after completion to ensure effectiveness of the partnership, address any issues, and decide on continuation.
The fee structure for access to programs and public swims is not expected to change this year, and any future changes will be the subject of negotiations between the Municipality and the YMCA.
To further elaborate on the benefits, a report from the Parks and Recreational Department of the Municipality of North Grenville highlights that with the existing agreement, staff have been able to refocus time to increase community development opportunities and key support for major events.
This has resulted in the strengthening of relationships with local organizations such as the Kemptville Youth Centre, as well as community associations and service clubs.
For example, the Municipality was able to provide hands on support preparing for events such as Buskerfest, Canada Day, the IPM and the Santa Claus Parade, and more time available to dedicate to Municipally led activities such as ParticipACTION and the first North Grenville Youth Summit.
These efforts have demonstrated positive outcomes for the community, and [staff] are seeking to expand this work plan, as well as to include volunteer engagement and not-for-profit organizational development activities.
It is expected that this new arrangement will offer even more of the same.
The staff report continues to note that an expanded partnership with the YMCA of Eastern Ontario is also supported by the Strategic Plan and the Parks, Recreation and Culture Master Plan.
Further details include that the Municipality:
- Will retain full ownership of the pool and building;
- assist in communications; and
- be responsible for all facility maintenance.
The YMCA will manage program registration through their online registration portal.
It is also clearly stated and understood that any YMCA relationship in the Municipality of North Grenville will be one that remains open to all regardless of race, sex, religion, or economic circumstance.
The proposal will be discussed at the Council meeting on Tuesday, April 4, 2023. For details on how to attend the meeting in person or watch online visit www.northgrenville.ca/meetings.
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