by Anna Romiti and Chris Soden
The YMCA of Orange County has converted their previously-closed Fullerton Family YMCA Fitness Center into a place for local hospital employees to sleep and shower between their long shifts. The facility’s gymnasium is outfitted with 32 cots, with the capacity for up to 80. Following physical distancing procedures, every cot contains blankets and pillows that are separated by unique dividers, which are handmade by one of their board members, Tony Spriggs. Each divider is 10 x 8 and is made up of a tarp and pvc piping. To date, he has made 100 of these for their organization. The YMCA saw the need to ensure frontline workers have a safe place to recoup and to ease the burden of the medical system.
Since California began the shelter-in-place, The YMCA of Orange County has focused its operations in offering childcare for essential workers and holding virtual classes for members to stay active remotely. While it is no simple task adapting to the everchanging health landscape, the YMCA follows the latest protocols adhering to the latest CDC health guidance to ensure the utmost safety and wellbeing of all their participants, staff, and families. First responders, emergency dispatchers, law enforcement are among the essential service industries utilizing childcare during this time of vital need.
As a leader childcare and health programming, the YMCA is proud to provide community support in times of urgency.