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In this Edition: 
  • Year-Round Advocacy - Local Delegation Meetings & Committee Weeks
  • Florida State Alliance Staff Introductions
  • SKY Family YMCA Welcomes New CEO
  • Florida Ys Respond to Hurricane Dorian Recovery
  • Florida YMCA Teen Changemakers Summit
  • Funding Opportunities
  • Local YMCA Bright Spot
  • Florida Ys in the News


Local Delegation Meetings

The 2019-2020 Florida Legislative Session is upon us! To kick off the legislative session, legislators hold Local County Delegation Meetings in their home county(ies). These meetings will normally include the introduction of proposed local bills, presentations focusing on economic development and upcoming legislative priorities of the members, as well as time to hear from local organizations and agencies.

The Florida State Alliance of YMCAs Advocacy Team will be connecting with Ys to work with your association to attend delegation meetings of interest to Statewide efforts.  Click here to see your delegation meeting.

When considering attending a local delegation meeting here are some helpful tips:
  • Know your public officials - Find out more about them. What committees do they sit on? What things are they passionate about? Do any of those passions align with the Y commitment to strengthen communities? 
  • Have an elevator speech - Have a clear, brief message about your Y and some of the initiatives you are working on. 
  • Thank them - Thank them for their time, and commitment to the community they serve. You can do this face to face, with a card, or over social media

Committee Weeks
Committee weeks kick off Monday, September 16, 2019. 

This year, Committee weeks will fall on the following weeks:

  • October 14 - 18, 2019
  • October 21-25, 2019
  • November 4-8, 2019
  • November 12-15, 2019
  • December 9-13, 2019

During the non-committee weeks, Ys have the opportunity to meet with their legislators in their districts, invite their legislators to Y events and engage them outside of Tallahassee.

The Florida State Alliance of YMCAs Advocacy Team will be reaching out to local Ys to work with your local association to schedule & attend meetings as needed. 

On-Going Advocacy
For tips on engaging your elected officials to visit, check out the Find Your Legislator page on our website! 

For a complete guide check out Y-USA's Updated Engaging with Public Officials Toolkit and the Exchange Page for Tools and Resources.


The Florida State Alliance of YMCAs has a new team! This team of individuals is here to serve local YMCAs through state programs like Florida YMCA Youth In Government, YMCA Reads! and Safety Around Water, as well as services like Advocacy, Strategic Planning, Board Development, and Shared Service/Merger Agreements. We are so excited to have a hardworking, cause-driven team to support our local Ys! 

Lynne Wilcox, President/CEO, Florida Alliance of YMCAs & Foundation
John Trombetta, Vice President of Operations, Florida State Alliance of YMCA & Foundation
Scott Fahrney, Operations Director, Florida State Alliance of YMCAs & Foundation
Christina Wiley, Executive Director, Florida YMCA Youth In Government
Lily Tysinger, Program Director, Florida YMCA Youth In Government
Shartrina White, Executive Director, YMCA Reads! 


The YPN Chapter 27 conference is two months away! This conference will take place on November 14-15, 2019 in Tampa, FL.  

We're excited to announce that the conference registration link is NOW open! Registration Link

Fees: YPN Members $149 | YPN Prime Members* $99

Register for or renew your PRIME membership first in the Learning & Career Development Center.    
Use discount code D43M87F to get a reduced YPN PRIME member conference rate.


Hotel Block Information
Conference Hotel rate is $159 night at the beautiful Sheraton Riverwalk in Tampa.
200 N Ashley Drive,
Tampa, FL 33602.
Reservation Link to Hotel

YPN Award Nomination
YPN Chapter 27 seeks to recognize members within the chapter for their individual accomplishments and leadership that strengthens the YMCA movement and our YPN chapter. We ask that you please take the time to nominate one or more deserving individuals for their outstanding commitment and dedication to the YMCA and YPN.
These awards include: 

  • Cause-Driven Leader of the Year
  • Outstanding New Director of the Year
  • Outstanding Director of the Year
  • Developing Others Award
  • YPN Service Award
  • Emerging Leader
Descriptions of each award can be found on the Nomination Form. YPN Award Nomination Form The form will close on September 27, 2019. 

YPN Conference Sponsorships
If you have a partnership with an exhibitor or vendor, and you think they might want to sponsor the conference, contact Ryan Smith

Please share with your staff and encourage them to attend this inaugural conference. There will be an award given to the YMCA with the most registered attendees! 


The SKY Family YMCA welcomes a new CEO! The Board of Directors of The SKY Family YMCA has ratified the decision of the CEO Search Committee to select Gene Jones as the next President/CEO of The SKY Family YMCA.

In the opinion of the committee, Gene’s skill set and broad experience make him uniquely qualified to lead this YMCA. As the Vice President of Operations and Youth Development at the YMCA of Metropolitan Washington, a premier YMCA serving Washington D.C., Maryland, and northern Virginia with a $60M budget, Gene has demonstrated experience in all facets of branch operations. Currently, he is primarily responsible for the supervision of nine Y locations but also has centralized the Youth Development initiatives including the direction of over 80 youth development sites, which represents half of the Association revenues. His experience in creating collaborations and his passion for the development of staff and staff teams is a hallmark of his leadership style. Gene and his wife Stephanie are looking forward to making Southwest Florida their home as they move from northern Virginia.

Please help us welcome Gene to Florida! 


Hurricane Dorian was marked as one of the slowest moving storms in the Atlantic. It destroyed thousands of homes and businesses and leftover 70,000 homeless. Florida Ys have stepped up to assist with recovery. 

Five Ys across the state are collecting donations to provide support to the Bahamas.

  • YMCA of South Palm Beach County
  • Highlands County YMCA
  • YMCA of Central Florida
  • YMCA of South Collier
  • SKY Family YMCA

Two Ys are working with their partners on transporting the items to the Bahamas. 

  • YMCA of South Collier - utilizing a boating organization
  • SKY Family YMCA - partnering with a local Rotary and a flight group

In addition to our local YMCAs, our Florida YMCA Youth In Government (YIG) Student Presiding Officers are hard at work collecting items. At the Fall Servant Leadership Conference, September 6-7, 2019, the Presiding Officers kicked off their supply drive for the Bahamas. Together the YIG students have collected: over 700 personal hygiene supplies, over 100 food items, 50 baby supplies, first aid kits, paper towels, tarps, and more. 

They used this event to kick-off mini drives throughout the state and will be hosting a competition on which chapter can collect the most. The winner will be announced at our Fall Delegate Convention in Orlando. 

We are so impressed by the quick response from our YMCAs.   


The Florida State Alliance of YMCAs invites you to celebrate the end of the YMCA's 175th anniversary year with the first-ever Florida YMCA Teen Changemakers Summit. This event will reinforce the Y's commitment to youth-led innovation and developing young changemakers. 

What will happen at the Florida YMCA Teen Changemakers Summit? 
The summit will present content tailored to young leaders that is fun, engaging, impactful, and empowering. The event will include thought-provoking workshops, collaborative roundtable discussions, and inspiring keynotes. This event will model the Y's broader belief in inclusion and intentionally create spaces where all youth voice can be amplified. 

Who should attend?
The primary audience of the Florida YMCA Teen Changemakers Summit is high school-aged youth. Along with teens, we welcome staff and volunteers that work with these young leaders. This event is an ideal professional development opportunity for any staff members wishing to learn more about the Y's teen programs. Additionally, this is an opportunity to engage young Y professionals who can collaborate with and mentor youth through a near-peer approach. 

When? Where? 
The event will be hosted on Friday, November 22nd and Saturday, November 23rd, 2019 at Hilton Hotel Lake Buena Vista - Disney Springs Area. Attendees are required to stay on-site and lodging is included in the registration fee. Check-in will begin at 5 PM on November 22nd and programming will conclude at 5 PM on November 23rd. The registration deadline is October 23rd and the registration fee is $120 per participant. YMCAs are responsible for arranging transportation for participating students. If your association runs Youth In Government programming, we encourage you to reach out to your Delegation Leader, since they are likely already working to recruit chaperones and coordinate transportation to and from the event. If you don't know who the Delegation Leader at your Y is, please contact the State Office at so we can connect you.

This information has been sent to the YPN Teen Peer Community, Youth In Government network and Leaders Club network. If there are other teen-centered groups that should be included please e-mail the State Office at


YMCA of the Suncoast
The YMCA of the Suncoast - Hernando County YMCA recently invited Congressman Webster to visit their Y and learn about how they are serving the community. This is an awesome example of Advocacy in Action!  The Congressman even participated in their Back to School drive by donating some backpacks filled with school supplies to help kids start off the school year prepared.

Have a Bright Spot? Share it with us at


Walmart Foundation Accepting Applications for Community Grant Program

The Walmart Foundation is accepting applications through its Community Grant Program.
Grants of up to $5,000 will be awarded to local nonprofit organizations located within the service area of individual Walmart stores in the areas of hunger relief and healthy eating, health and human services, quality of life, education, community, and economic development, diversity and inclusion, public safety, and environmental sustainability.

To be eligible, applicants must be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) or (19) of the Internal Revenue Code; or a recognized government entity (state, county, or city agency, including law enforcement or fire departments) requesting funds exclusively for a public purpose; or a K-12 public or private school, charter school, community/junior college, state/private college or university; or a church or other faith-based organization with a proposed project that benefits the community at large.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis through December 31, 2019. Link to full RFP here

Robert Woods Johnson (RWJ) Foundation Culture of Health Prizes

Is your Y's community helping transform neighborhoods, schools, and businesses so everyone has the opportunity to thrive? Apply for the 2020 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Culture of Health Prize. The prize honors and elevates communities working at the forefront of advancing health, opportunity, and equity for all. Winning communities will receive a $25,000 cash prize and national recognition. Nominate your community by Nov. 4. Register to join a webinar at 2 p.m. (CT) Sept. 24 to learn more.

Ben and Jerry's Foundation - Social and Environmental Justice Projects

The Ben and Jerry's Foundation is inviting applications for its Grassroots Organizing for Social Change Program.

Through the program, grants of up to $25,000 will be awarded to nonprofit community-based groups in the United States working to advance social and environmental justice and support sustainable and just food systems. The foundation prioritizes the types of activities and strategies an organization uses for creating social change rather than on the specific issues the organization is addressing. Priority strategies identified by the foundation include: community and ally outreach; leadership development; constituent empowerment and decision-making; popular education; root cause analysis; power analysis; campaign development; constituent and ally mobilization; coalition building; and direct action.

To be eligible, applicants must be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or have a fiscal sponsor with such status.

Pre-applications are due October 16. Upon review, selected applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal. Link to RFP here

Charles Stewart Mott Foundation Afterschool Grant

Youth Service America (YSA) and the Mott Foundation will award $500 Afterschool Grants to support youth-led service or service-learning in afterschool programs. Any after school program in the U.S. that engages at least 50 middle & high school students can apply.

Click Here more information or to access the application.

National Voter Registration Day
September 24, 2019

YPN Award Nominations Due
September 27, 2019
Nomination Form

DIG Innovation Conference
October 2-4, 2019
Baltimore, MD

Youth Workers Summit
October 7-9, 2019
Black Mountian, NC

Risk Management Conference
October 8-11, 2019
Phoenix, AZ

Florida CEO Meeting
November 13-14, 2019
Tampa, FL 

YPN Chapter 27 Conference
November 14-15, 2019
Tampa, FL

Florida YMCA Teen Changemakers Summit & Florida YIG: Fall Delegate Convention
November 22-23, 2019
Lake Buena Vista, FL

Florida Teen Leaders Rally
December 6-8, 2019
Riverview, FL

Praesidium Guardian Training
December 10-12, 2019
Clearwater, FL

Tampa Summer Regional Training Event
September 26 - October 31, 2019
Event Information

South Florida Regional Training Event
September 3 - October 31, 2019
Event Information

Tampa Fall Regional Training Event
October 1 - December 31, 2019
Event Information

Contact Rhonda McVey, Regional Training Director, YUSA Training Partner YMCA, for more information.


  • Central Florida Metro YMCA  
  • Florida's First Coast YMCA
  • Highlands County Family YMCA  
  • Lake Wales Family YMCA
  • Manatee County Family YMCA
  • Greater Marco Family YMCA
  • North Central Florida YMCA
  • YMCA of Northwest Florida
  • Palm Beaches Metropolitan YMCA
  • YMCA of Greater St. Petersburg
  • Sarasota Family YMCA
  • The SKY Family YMCA
  • YMCA of South Florida
  • YMCA of South Collier
  • YMCA of South Palm Beach County
  • YMCA of the Suncoast
  • Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA
  • YMCA of the Treasure Coast
  • Volusia/Flagler Family YMCA
  • YMCA of West Central Florida
Become a YMCA Advocate by joining the YMCA Advocates Action Center and receive action alerts on legislative issues. These actions alerts will allow you to communicate the position of the YMCA with a simple click of a button. You can also log your interactions with your elected officials and take place in the virtual National Advocacy Day.
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