South DeKalb YMCA to receive millions in grant money

South DeKalb YMCA is one of several local entities and projects receiving grant money via a funding package championed by Congressman Hank Johnson (GA-04).

South DeKalb YMCA—which faced threats of closure in 2021 and just returned to hosting after-school programs in 2023—will receive the largest portion of the grant, with $4 million of the $15.8 million earmarked for the YMCA located on Snapfinger Road.

Other projects and groups receiving funding in DeKalb include:

• $850,000 for DeKalb County Line Park improvements.
• $500,000 to create a “DeKalb County Community Schoolyard” that can be accessed by children and families after school hours.
• $800,000 for Women’s Resource Center for Domestic Violence to use for housing projects for domestic violence survivors in DeKalb.
• $145,335 for increasing pedestrian and vehicular safety via the realignment of Chestnut at Buford Highway in Doraville.
• $850,000 for Kittredge Athletic Fields to replace its field and fencing and renovate other structures.
•$800,000 to assist with building the first phase of the North Fork Peachtree Creek Trail.
• $1,000,000 for DeKalb Peachtree Airport’s design and demolition of the administration building.
• $1,166,279 for MARTA’s Safe Routes to Transit Program to improve pedestrian and Americans with Disabilities Act accessibility at bus stops.
• $850,000 for top end I-285 Trail-Georgetown segment in Dunwoody.

A news release states that South DeKalb YMCA plans to use the funding to “narrow disparities across health, community, and economic prosperity and build a more equitable community.”

Johnson’s press release states that the project is an appropriate use of taxpayer funds because it helps restore the South DeKalb Family YMCA to a thriving community hub “which has historically served as a beacon for health, wellbeing, and community growth.”

In October, the facility relaunched the Y Explore Afterschool Program and Club and began providing additional out-of-school programs such as Summer Adventures in Learning and holiday camps following a partnership between YMCA of Metro Atlanta, the state of Georgia, and the department of family and child services.

Some South DeKalb YMCA members feared the facility would close in 2021 due to lack of funding, despite YMCA South DeKalb being the first metro Atlanta YMCA to offer after-school programs.

The facility also includes a computer lab, a fitness center, gyms, outdoor fields, event rooms, and courses in early learning, family strengthening, and sports to its members.

For more information about South DeKalb YMCA or to sign up for its programs, visit ymcaatlanta.org or call (770) 987-3500.

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