Dryades YMCA

Continuing A Legacy Of Service

Glenda Bell Data News Weekly Contributor

The Dryades YMCA kicked off its highly anticipated Capital Campaign on June 20th, 2024, with a vibrant event that highlighted both its achievements and ambitious future goals. The event, led by honorary Chairperson Council Member Lesli Harris, CEO Erika Mann, and Board Chair Commissioner Tenisha Stevens, underscored the YMCA’s commitment to serving and enriching the community.

“Under my leadership, it is important that a collaborative approach to identify the needs of our neighbors and deliver the services based on those needs must be vital in our role of serving the community,” says Mann.

Council Member Lesli Harris set the tone with her enthusiastic support for the YMCA and its leadership team. She expressed her excitement about partnering with CEO Erika Mann and praised the dedicated staff for their impactful work in the community. Harris emphasized the importance of collaboration between government and nonprofit organizations to address community needs effectively.

Board Chair Commissioner Tenisha Stevens welcomed guests with infectious enthusiasm, celebrating the organization’s positive momentum and promising future directions. Her remarks resonated deeply, reinforcing the YMCA’s role as a cornerstone of community development and empowerment.

US Congressman Troy Carter added to the evening’s fervor with his heartfelt congratulations to CEO Erika Mann and her team for their exemplary service. Carter pledged his unwavering support, declaring his intent to advocate for federal funding in Washington DC to bolster the YMCA’s initiatives and further strengthen community ties. His commitment underscored the bipartisan support and collective effort aimed at securing resources essential for sustainable growth and development.

CEO Erika Mann took the stage to share inspiring achievements, including a record number of students enrolled in the YMCA’s Childcare Center, marking a milestone in its history. The center’s expansion reflects the YMCA’s commitment to providing quality care and educational opportunities for young children in the community.

Further enhancing its community impact, the CEO, Erika Mann announced a partnership with the New Orleans All-Star Band, comprising over 250 members. This collaboration aims to train young musicians, helping them earn scholarship opportunities for collegiate education—a testament to the Dryades YMCA’s support for youth development through arts and education.

Additionally, the Dryades YMCA continues to thrive with its Summer Camp Programs, in partnership with the ASHE’ Cultural Arts Center. These initiatives provide enriching experiences for youth, fostering creativity, cultural appreciation, and personal growth during the summer months.

The Capital Campaign represents a pivotal effort to secure funding for expanding facilities, enhancing programs, and sustaining these vital community services. Through partnerships with local businesses, philanthropists, and community stakeholders, the Dryades YMCA aims to build a stronger foundation for future generations.

CEO Erika Mann’s leadership has been instrumental in steering the Dryades YMCA towards its mission of fostering holistic community development. Her dedication to innovation and inclusivity has propelled the DYMCA to new heights, earning accolades and support from across the community.

“Historically, the Dryades YMCA has been a central cornerstone of this community and has been consistently the answer to the needs of the community. DYMCA is a Y for ALL!” Mann says of their commitment to service. Continuing she remarks, “We pride ourselves in serving the community, from infants to seniors one neighbor at a time.”

With a rich legacy of impact, the Dryades YMCA Capital Campaign kickoff was a testament to collaboration, innovation, and community spirit. With leaders like CEO Erika Mann, and Board Chair Commissioner Tenisha Stevens at the helm, the DYMCA is poised to continue its legacy of service and advocacy, making a lasting difference in the lives of individuals and families across New Orleans.

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