Important YMCA Reopening Information
Issued: August 26, 2020
Dear YMCA Members...
Taking care of our health is important now more than ever before. At the Y, we're here to help you stay active, health and iprove your well-being.
As previously shared, we're excited to share our reopening dates with you:
- August 31: Les Chater Family YMCA
- September 8: Hamilton Downtown Family YMCA | Laurier Brantford YMCA | Ron Edwards Family YMCA
- September 11: Flamborough Family YMCA
We want to help you prepare for your return to the YMCA in the healthiest and safest way possible.
Your YMCA - We're Ready for You!
While we've been closed, we've been working hard to improve your YMCA experience. All members will automatically have an account in our new YMCA Portal where you will be able to manage your own account, book workouts and manage family schedules. Within the next 24 hours, you will receive an email prompt from the YMCA asking you to activate your YMCA Portal prior to booking your first workout with us. Members who do not have an email address on file will be required to visit the YMCA Portal through ymcahbb.ca and enter their YMCA Membership Card number in order to activate their account or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
to receive staff support.
Members may book up to two time slots per day, up to 7 days in advance:
- Fitness Floor Workouts – 1 hour and 15 minutes in length
- Group Fitness Classes – 45 minutes in length
- Aquatics – 45 minute swim length with a 15 minute transition to use changerooms (may book up to two swims back to back)
Here are some things we're kindly asking our members to do to support health and safety:
- Book your workout time online
- Wear your mask while travelling throughout the facility (masks do not need to be worn while participating in physical activity)
- Maintain 2 metres apart from other people
- Bring your own water bottle, towel and yoga mat
- Arrive dressed and ready for your workout as changerooms will initially be closed, with the exception of members using the pool
- Complete a health screening prior to arrival
- Clean equipment using the cleaning system provided, both before and after each use
We all have a shared responsibility to support the safety of ourselves and those around us as we continue to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
How the YMCA is protecting your health
As you would expect, this means we’ve modified spaces, access points, traffic flow through our facilities and more. Here are just a few of the safety measures you’ll see when you visit the Y:
Workouts / Classes by appointment
Reduced hours of operation
- Members will be required to pre-book their workout or class through our new online YMCA Portal. Workouts will be booked in 1 hour and 15 minute time slots with a 15 minute break between workout slots to allow for cleaning and safe entry and exit of members.
Reduced building access
- Monday to Friday: 6am – 8pm
- Saturday & Sunday: 8am – 2pm
- We will continue to monitor these hours and make changes as required.
Physical distancing measures
- Building capacities are limited according to both provincial guidelines and local public health authorities
- Some areas of the YMCA will remain temporarily closed
Increased sanitization and disinfection
- Any line-ups are marked with physical distancing markers
- Equipment on the Fitness Floor has been spaced apart or temporarily out of use to maintain 2 metres between members working out
- Workout spaces in Group Fitness Classes are clearly marked two metres apart
- Single one-way directional entry and exits
Increased hand-sanitizing stations
- Staff will be frequently cleaning high-touch areas
- Facilities will be closed mid-day for a 30 minute deep cleaning
- Electrostatic sprayers will be used during deep cleaning hours.
- All hard-surface disinfectants used are on the approved product list from Health Canada.
Health screenings prior to entry
- We have increased the number of hand-sanitizing stations throughout all areas of the facility and are encouraging frequent hand-sanitizing when moving throughout the facility.
Contactless scan-in stations
- Members will be required to complete a quick online health assessment within the 2 hours prior to entry at each visit.
- The health assessment will be accessible at: ymcahbb.ca
- Members will show their membership card at the desk for a quick card scan where no direct contact is made between card and scanner.
For all the most current information, please read our Reopening Strategy.
As we slowly reopen, we will continue to monitor and evaluate our processes and safety measures to make sure the Y you love is as a safe as possible for all. As always, we want your feedback. If there are improvements or suggestions to safety measures, please speak with a member of the YMCA Team, email your YMCA branch or submit an online form
and we would be happy to discuss.
We're ready for you! And we can't wait to see you!
Senior Regional Manager, Health Fitness & Aquatics
Issued: August 6, 2020
Thank you for your support - we're closing in on our fundraising target!
We're thrilled to share that we will slowly be reopening our YMCA doors
at the Les Chater Family YMCA, beginning on Monday, August 31st. Our other locations will follow shortly thereafter.
We've done everything possible to ensure that our facilities meet the highest standards of health and safety and we've modified our policies and programs to ensure proper physical distancing practices can be maintained.
The plan for a safe return to operating our programs and welcoming you back is our priority. As we do, we have incurred increased costs in preparing our centres to protect our members, our staff and residents at our downtown Hamilton location. We are also expecting the needs for subsidized access to YMCA programs to be greater.
As shared in previous communications, the costs to meet programming and service needs is $250,000. Due to the generous support of our donors, members and key stakeholders we are currently 75% towards our fundraising goal of $250,000! Thank you to everyone who has generously donated so far.
We are almost there and if you are in a position to support our community, please help. With your support for our greatest needs, we can be ready to deliver the programming and services our community needs.
If you are in a position to help, please support our Greatest Needs Fund
The inclusive nature of all programs means every child and family, no matter their economic situation is welcome at the YMCA and have a place to belong. For over 160 years, the YMCA has never turned anyone away and we don't plan to start now.
If you can help, in anyway and at any level, please donate today
Thank you again for your consideration.
Vice President, Philanthropy
Your YMCA Re-Opening Date!
Issued: July 31, 2020
We are hard at work preparing to welcome you back to your YMCA! We have carefully modified programs, amenities, and protocols but with the same friendly support and quality exercise options you know and love. We are ready to help you regain your physical and mental health after this shut down. Over the past week, we obtained further clarity around some of the new provincial guidelines and today we are excited to share the dates for the phased re-opening of our YMCA beginning in late August.
|Les Chater Family YMCA
||August 31, 2020
|Ron Edwards Family YMCA
||September 8, 2020
|Hamilton Downtown Family YMCA
||September 8, 2020
|Laurier Brantford YMCA
||September 8, 2020
|Flamborough Family YMCA
||September 11, 2020
Memberships remain on hold at this time. All adult and student memberships will reactivate on August 31 to ensure you're able to access your YMCA Health & Fitness Centre on opening day. Child and Youth memberships will remain on hold until we're able to safely resume child and youth programming.
If you're not quite ready to return, you can keep your membership on hold a little longer by complete our simple Membership Form
. While you can access your YMCA as early as opening day, as a convenience for all members, membership payments will not resume until the week of September 21, 2020.
We will continue to share regular updates on what you can expect when you return to your YMCA as we get closer to opening day. To ensure your health and safety, we're making some adjustments to our regular programs and hours of operations.
Eager to get back to your YMCA community right away? We’ll be hosting some outdoor group fitness classes exclusively for YMCA members in each of our communities throughout the month of August. Dates, times, locations and registration details will be shared through email in the coming week.
The past few months have been challenging for all of us in our community including your YMCA. Needs in our community continue to grow and the role of your YMCA is more critical than ever before, particularly for the children, youth and families facing financial barriers.
The inclusive nature of all programs means every child and family, no matter their economic situation is welcome at the YMCA and have place to belong. For over 160 years, the YMCA has never turned anyone away and we don’t plan to start to now.
If you can help, in anyway and at any level, please do so by visiting www.ymcahbb.ca/donate
We’ve missed our valued YMCA members just as much as you’ve missed us. We can’t wait to welcome you back to the YMCA soon.
Nicki Glowacki, Chief Operating Officer
YMCA Member Update
Issued: July 17, 2020
On July 13th
the Ontario government announced that nearly all businesses and public spaces will reopen in Stage 3 of the provinces reopening framework. This stage will include the eventual reopening of our YMCA facilities.
We appreciate there are some positive steps forward with this announcement, however at this time an opening date for your YMCA has not been determined. We know it will take several weeks to put plans in place for a safe reopening, once we receive clarity on the provincial guidelines.
The first step in doing so will be recalling our YMCA Staff Team and ensuring everyone is appropriately trained on new health and safety protocols. Facilities will be retrofitted with dividers, signage and other health measures where appropriate and pools will require public health inspection.
We are as excited to eventually welcome you back just as much as many of you have shared you are to return. We have received some incredibly supportive notes from many members and we thank you.
We also recognize that not everyone will be ready to return upon reopening. If you wish to extend the current hold on your membership, you may do so by completing a Membership Hold Form
We will continue to keep you updated on the measures we’re taking to keep everyone safe and once a reopening date has been determined, you will be the first to know.
Senior Regional Manager, Health, Fitness & Aquatics
We're Getting Ready for You!
Issued: July 9, 2020
We miss you! It’s been hard being away from the people we care about and who make up the YMCA. We know many of you are eager to get back to your YMCA and wonder when you can return.
Once we get the green light from our Province and move to Phase 3 we will be able to begin re-opening our Health & Fitness Centres in a phased approach. Across all of our YMCA programs, we’re following some important principles to guide our re-opening plans; among these is a commitment to put people first – both our valued YMCA members and employees. We want to welcome you back as safely as possible.
In the meantime, we’re busy getting ready and doing everything possible to ensure our facilities meet the highest standards of health and safety and modifying our policies and programs to ensure proper physical distancing practices can be maintained. Each of our Health & Fitness Centres has undergone a thorough deep cleaning during our closure and we’ve modified spaces, access points, traffic flow through our facilities and more.
Here are just a few of the safety measures you'll see when you visit the Y:
- Glass barriers at Membership Desks
- Health screenings upon entry
- Contactless scan-in stations
- Single one-way directional entry and exit
- Physical distancing measures to maintain 2 metres between other people
- Increased sanitization and disinfection
- Increased hand-sanitizing stations
- Controlled building access and class sizes to support physical distancing
We all have a shared responsibility to support the safety of ourselves and those around us as we continue to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Over the coming weeks, we will slowly reopen spaces and programs within your YMCA as it becomes safe to do so. This may mean you will have to vary your workout routine through a combination of programs at the YMCA, virtual fitness
at home or outdoors, as we all adjust to changes in the YMCA environment.
For the convenience of members, we’re also investing in new technology solutions to help you pre-book and manage your workouts online. We’re committed to supporting access to this new technology and keeping members informed about re-opening plans. To ensure we have the most up-to-date contact information for you and your family, we encourage you to complete our Member Communications Information Form
, where you can also subscribe to our Member newsletter. Please stay tuned to our website
and social media channels as we await further provincial announcements.
Finally, as we plan for a safe return to YMCA programs, we know more children, youth and families will need the support of our YMCA. The needs of our community will be greater than ever. If you can help, at any level, please do so by visiting: www.ymcahbb.ca/donate
Although the ways we’ll interact with one another may look different, you’ll always be able to connect with people, improve your health and wellness, nurture your children’s potential, and help strengthen our community. We can’t wait to see you soon!
Senior Regional Manager, Health, Fitness & Aquatics