STRENGTHENING COMMUNITIES IS AT THE HEART OF OUR MISSION
The Strong Communities Program aligns the North Suburban YMCA's purpose and values with our social and environmental activities in the 15 communities that we serve.
- At its core, the program is our fulfillment of the Y's focus on giving back and providing support to our neighbors.
- The program has the additional objectives of fostering care and respect for all people and our environment, increasing a sense of purpose and meaning in the lives of our members, and empowering our members to take our mission to heart so we can do good across the Northern Suburbs.
Impacting Lives Everyday
Our social responsibility committee meets and determines the key target focuses throughout our communities:
- Veterans and military service members
- Low-income families
- Battered Women
- Children battling illnesses
- Domestic animals
- The environment
We believe that if we worked together we can improve the quality of life for those in our communities.
We Build Strong Communities All Year
- The NSYMCA staff volunteered to help hungry children overseas by packing food for the Feeding My Starving Children organization for MLK Day of Service.
- The Y collected food donations for Northfield Food Pantry.
- NSYMCA expanded their recycling program to give back to our planet.
- The NSYMCA partnered with Two Kisses, Two Hugs to deliver warm smiles and toys to Children at Advocate Children's Hospital.
- The NSYMCA partnered with the Northbrook Library for Little Free Library Story-time to kids.
- For several times every summer, the NSYMCA campers and staff prepare and donate lunches to children at the Glenview Youth Services. This not only involves our members with their donations, but it teaches the campers about social responsibility and giving back to others.
- The NSYMCA created Wheels vs Wheels, a high energy wheelchair football game encourages children and adults to participate in activities and overcome disabilities. Our Partnership with Journey of Hope, Northwestern Football , Griffins Youth Football, GLASA, and By Your Side- Autism Services allowed to make this all happen.
- The NSYMCA works with our partner Toys "R" US of Highland Park to provide toys to our community including, Northbrook Civic Foundation, One Step Oncology Camp for children, and many other organizations throughout Chicagoland.
- In response to the Floods to communities along the Des Plaines River, we collected school supplies to those communities and those of lower income who cannot afford it.
- In 2017, the NSYMCA honored our military veterans and heroes of 9/11 with the raising of a new flag and several community projects alongside the partnership of the American Legion, USO, and Lowe's of Northbrook.
- NSYMCA worked together with Alzheimer's association to reeducate and raise money for alzheimer's.
- The NSYMCA stated the annual Giving Tuesday - Give Back and donated thousands of toys to a dozen charitable organizations throughout our broad service area.
There are many challenges that keep individuals and communities from reaching their full potential. No organization can accomplish this work alone. Real Progress and positive change is only possible if we work together. The North Suburban YMCA is proud to work annually with over 60 strategic partners, Community organizations, and businesses to identify oppotunities to build strong kids., strong families and strong communities. In the last year our Strong Communities program worked with these specific Social Responsibility (SR) partners:
- Advocate Children's Hospital
- Gogo Squeeze
- Northwestern University Athletics
- Alzheimer's Association
- Heartland Animal Shelter
- Operation Gratitude
- American Legion of Northbrook
- Holy Family Services
- Orphans of the Storm
- Book Bridge
- Jewish Child and Family Services
- Random Acts of Flowers
- Boy Scouts of America
- Lake County Cares
- Relay for Life
- Camp One Step
- Life Source
- Safe Haven School
- ConTech Lighting
- Lowe's Home Improvement
- St. Joseph the Worker Catholic Church
- Coat off Your Back
- Northbrook Maristella
- CJE Senior Life
- Moraine Township
- The Ability Experiencer
- EnerNOC Energy Demand
- Northbrook Civic Foundation
- The Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association
- Response Program
- Northbrook Community Relations Council
- Toys R Us - Highland Park
- Families Helping Families
- Northbrook Garden Club
- Tow Trucks for Tots
- Girl Scouts of the USA
- Northbrook Police and Fire Department
- Two Kisses Two Hugs Foundation
- Glencoe Public Library
- Northbrook Public Library
- USO Great Lakes
- Glenview Public Library
- Northbrook Rotary CLub
- Willow House
- Glenview Youth Services
- Northfield Township Food Pantry
- Muller Subaru of Highland Park
- The NSYMCA collected vases for Random Acts of Flowers, who redistributes recycled flowers, improves the emotional health and well-being of individuals in health care facilities
- NSYMCA hosted the "Monarch Maniacs" in helping to distribute & educate the community on Monarch butterflies & the importance of milkweed
- The NSYMCA supported Northbrook's proclamation, "Make Northbrook a Monarch Way Station" by planting milkweed in our own veggie & pollinator gardens
- In 2019, the Y partnered with Eco- cell https://www.eco-cell.com/ to collect & recycle small electronics like cell phones, tablets, ipods etc to keep them out of the landfill while conserving species
- In 2019, we introduced our clothes, shoes & textile recycling program with USAgain. In July alone we collected 469 pounds of textiles, saved 1,125,600 gallons of water, 3yds of landfill space saved, and 7,035 pounds of CO2 prevented from emission.
- Our facility has also partnered with Terracycle to keep toothbrushes, toothpaste, floss containers, GoGoSqueeze pouches, chips bags as well as, hair care, skin care & cosmetic product packaging out of the landfill.
- Muller Subaru in Highland Park & their "Subaru loves the Earth" program has generously donated prepaid "zero-waste boxes" so that we can also recycle coffee cups, coffee lids, straws, K-cup capsules, candy & snack wrappers in our specialized bins. Check out their youtube video here