As a subcontractor for Allen MAC, I designed campaign logo concepts and drafted a case statement to raise money to build the local YWCA’s Sports & Wellness Center. Although the client ultimately elected not to use the document, I still believe it makes a good case for supporting the center.
The YWCA Sports & Wellness Center Campaign Case Statement
‘Empowering Women & Girls, Eliminating Racism’
The YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County is one of 313 organizations of the Young Women’s Christian Association of the USA. Nationwide, the YWCA is the largest provider of shelter for women and families, the largest not-for-profit child care provider, a leading provider of employment training and placement services for women, and a leader in sports and fitness programs for women and girls. Locally, as well as nationally, the YWCA’s mission is to empower women and girls and to eliminate racism. The Winston-Salem YWCA’s slogan is “Reaching Out, Meeting Needs, Changing Lives.”
The Winston-Salem YWCA started in 1908 when its founding churchwomen set out to help young women coming into town to work for Reynolds Tobacco and Hanes Knitting companies. In those days, female empowerment required such competencies as stenography, typing, arithmetic, English, cooking, sewing and millinery skills—all of which were taught by the local YWCA. In the decades since, the programs and services of the YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County have grown increasingly diverse, along with its membership. Under the capable leadership of Executive Director Florence P. Corpening, today’s Winston-Salem YWCA is well regarded and widely respected.
Each year, the YWCA touches thousands of lives in the greater Winston-Salem community and beyond. Because of the Winston-Salem YWCA, working parents have access to high-quality, affordable child care at locations all over Forsyth County. At the Best Choice Center, at-risk children are learning to recognize academic achievement as a key to a better future. Parents are growing and learning alongside their children at the Empowering Family Center. Women living at the Hawley House or participating in Project New Start are finding new direction for their lives and successfully reuniting with their families. Boys and girls of all ages are developing essential sports skills and playing on winning teams. Hundreds of adult members are enjoying better health because they regularly swim and work out at the YWCA.
With the 100th anniversary of the Winston-Salem YWCA fast approaching, its leaders have identified a number of needs to which the organization is not only mission-bound, but uniquely qualified to respond. The most urgent needs include offering more and better support for amateur athletes, helping reverse emerging health and fitness trends, providing more and better programs for at-risk children and adolescents, and helping our community grow and prosper. Unfortunately, the YWCA’s Glade Street facility is pushed to its limits by popular programs already in place.
The idea for the proposed YWCA Sports & Wellness Center developed as part of a larger strategic plan to guide the organization into its next century of service. Planning for the new center began in earnest in 2001 when, using grants from the Winston-Salem Foundation and the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, the YWCA contracted with consultants to evaluate interest in the center and the feasibility of a capital campaign to fund construction. The results of the study, detailed in a March 2002 report, indicated community leaders supported the idea of a first-of-its-kind sports complex for girls and women. The Board of Directors decided to act on the consultants’ recommendation to go ahead with plans for the center and a supporting capital campaign.
The initial concept for a sports complex for girls and women quickly evolved toward a broader, more comprehensive purpose. An early alliance with the Wake Forest University School of Medicine—believed to be the nation’s first partnership of its kind—dramatically expanded program possibilities. Besides being a friendly, welcoming place where girls, women and families can learn, grow and play together, the center will be a place where serious research can be conducted. The center will be open to all, but some areas of the facility and many of the programs will be especially designed for girls and women. The potential benefits to the individuals involved, as well as to the area’s medical and educational communities, will be substantial.
As a site for new and expanded after-school programs, the center will be a fun and inspiring place for young people to receive academic coaching and training in essential life skills, with a special emphasis on sports and physical activities as part of a happy, healthy life. As the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports noted in a 1996 research digest, “If the discretionary time of young individuals is not devoted to positive skill-building activities, including the abilities to participate in the games, dances, and sports of one’s culture, then the potential for involvement in numerous socially unacceptable behaviors is increased.” Programs at the new YWCA Sports & Wellness Center will be designed to offer just such beneficial activities.
For the greater Winston-Salem community, the YWCA sees its proposed facility as an attractive new venue for a variety of amateur sporting events. The games, tournaments and competitions the center will accommodate will stimulate our local economy by attracting thousands of visitors to the city each year. News coverage of these special events will raise the city’s visibility and promote a positive image for our community as a great place in which to come out and play.
Projected costs to build the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center total $5 million. The goal is admittedly ambitious, but the staff and volunteers leading the YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County are confident the investment in the center will be more than amply rewarded in both tangible and intangible ways. In considering your part in the campaign, we ask you to consider thoughtfully the following case statement.
The YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County enjoys a well-deserved reputation as a leading service provider for the greater Winston-Salem area. The community’s high regard for the organization derives directly from the value and benefit of its programs.
Youth Sports. Through its Youth Sports programs, the YWCA helps boys and girls of all ages learn sportsmanship and teamwork while developing skills need to play their chosen sport. The YWCA is a Junior NBA/WNBA host site and offers basketball skills clinics based on the Junior NBA/WNBA curriculum. Other popular programs teach boys and girls skills in volleyball and lacrosse, with plans underway to offer soccer and wrestling clinics in the near future. In 2002, the YWCA became the official home of the Winston-Salem Stealers Girls’ Amateur Athletics Union Basketball Team.
Fitness for All Abilities. For people of all ages and abilities, the Winston-Salem YWCA offers programs and facilities to help members improve their health and fitness. The fitness center at the Glade Street YWCA has a full complement of equipment for strength, cardiovascular and flexibility training, including strength training equipment that can be used by people in wheelchairs. The original swimming pool, opened in 1957, is a popular spot for swimming laps and participating in water exercise classes. The therapeutic warm-water pool, opened in 1997, is the ideal place for people to improve limited mobility, flexibility and endurance. The YWCA offers several classes of membership, allowing a choice of programs and facilities to access. Members can attend classes, work out independently or arrange for individual help from personal trainers.
Project New Start. Launched in 1983, Project New Start serves former female inmates, spouses and families of inmates. At the Forsyth County Detention Center, Project New Start volunteers join the Forsyth Jail and Prison Ministries in visits to female inmates and for weekly Bible study and prayer. At the Glade Street facility, the program offers weekly Bible study, a weekly support group on building healthy relationships and a weekly “Family Fun Nite” for inmate spouses, female ex-offenders and children.
The Empowering Family Center. The YWCA opened the Empowering Family Center on Liberty Street in 1992 to help parents become better role models for their children and to help children and teenagers develop the skills they need to succeed in the world beyond their neighborhoods.
Hawley House. Hawley House, a program managed by the Winston-Salem YWCA since 1998, helps women who have completed a substance abuse treatment program continue their recovery in a supportive residential environment. Through individual and group counseling and program referrals, women at Hawley House get help with developing vocational skills, finding jobs, and acquiring problem-solving and life skills to help them live independently.
The Peanut Butter & Jelly Child Care Program. The YWCA’s Peanut Butter & Jelly Child Care Program provides working parents with affordable before- and after-school child care at sites throughout the community. The structured programs offer students tutoring and help with homework, arts and crafts instruction, sports and recreational activities, computer and sports skills training and programs to help develop character and improve life skills. The Peanut Butter & Jelly program also offers “fun days” and intercession care on days when schools are closed for holidays or bad weather. During summer holidays, children enjoy the YWCA Summer Experience, a day camp for kindergarteners through seventh graders.
The Best Choice Center. In 2002, the Best Choice Center, formerly a free-standing agency of the United Way, became a program of the YWCA. The center offers an academics-centered program for at-risk children that also aims to develop social skills, expand horizons and inspire hope for the future. The merger of the Best Choice Center with the YWCA has helped the center serve more students and complete an 8,000-square-foot expansion of its Highland Avenue facility.
While the programs of the YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County are admittedly diverse, they share in common a fundamental imperative to meet genuine community needs. In planning programs and services for the future, the YWCA’s leaders have identified several compelling community needs the organization is ideally positioned to address.
The Need to Offer More, Better Support for Amateur Athletes. Amateur sports have a long, proud history in our community and state. One of the most successful teams in the history of women’s industrial-league basketball—the team from Hanes Hosiery—won three consecutive national Amateur Athletic Union championships between 1951 and 1953. Today, our state ranks second only to Florida in the number of participants in AAU-sanctioned programs.
Of particular interest to the YWCA is the accelerating growth in the number of girls and women interested in playing amateur and school sports. AAU membership among North Carolina girls and women grew by more than one-third from 2000 to 2001. Nationwide, the number of girls who registered for AAU basketball tournaments increased 264 percent between 1990 and 1998, exceeding the number of boys who chose basketball for the first time in 1997.
As their numbers increase, amateur athletes and their teams have an increasingly difficult time finding spaces where they can train, practice and play. Several fledgling amateur teams in our community have disbanded, not because they lacked the desire to play, but because they could find no places of their own. School gymnasiums are off-limits to outside teams during the school year because school-sponsored teams need the space. The Glade Street YWCA, already overflowing with active members of all ages, abilities and fitness goals, regrettably, has no space to offer new amateur teams.
The Need to Reverse Emerging Health and Fitness Trends. Of the ten leading causes of death in North Carolina during 2000, five of the top six—including heart disease, many forms of cancer, strokes, chronic respiratory disease and diabetes—are directly related to inactivity, improper diet and obesity. These lifestyle-related health problems also cause more than their share of disability and diminished quality of life for people of all ages.
Unfortunately, despite the well-known health and quality-of-life benefits of physical activity, good nutrition and effective weight management, growing numbers of Americans are becoming less active, eating less healthfully and becoming increasingly overweight and obese. At the same time, serious health risks and diseases formerly found only in adults are appearing with alarming frequency in adolescents and children.
Throughout America, medical experts and public health officials are alarmed by these trends and are working diligently to reverse them. With its longstanding commitment to and considerable expertise in promoting health and fitness, the YWCA of Winston-Salem is anxious to strengthen its leadership role within our community to encourage significantly better health habits.
The Need to Offer More, Better Programs for At-Risk Children and Adolescents. During 2002, the North Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice processed 1,272 complaints from Forsyth County for juvenile offenses ranging from discipline problems and minor infractions to the most serious classes of felonies. Since 1994, violent crime rates for Forsyth County youths younger than age 18 have been higher than the state and national levels, and each year more than half of all young offenders in the county have been arrested for violent and assault crimes. Drug arrests among Forsyth County youths have doubled since 1994.
With successful youth programs well underway at the Glade Street facility, the Family Empowerment Center, the Best Choice Center and other locations throughout the city and county, the YWCA of Winston-Salem is already a leader in our community’s efforts to help at-risk juveniles stay out of trouble and improve their chances for success. In planning for the future, the YWCA’s leaders recognize a continuing, expanding need for such programs and are committed to helping develop them.
The Need to Help Our Community Grow and Prosper. In a strategic plan released in August 2002, the City of Winston-Salem noted, “Economic development is generally viewed as the most important issue for the City.” Citing Winston-Salem’s lagging employment growth and retail sales growth, compared with other North Carolina metropolitan areas, the plan’s authors wrote, “Constituents indicate, and factual data support, the need to diversity the City’s economic base…. While some efforts are underway to improve the economic base (including the Technology Blueprint, the Education/Technology Blueprint, downtown revitalization, business recruiting and WinstonNet), citizens feel that more is needed.”
Since its earliest efforts to help Reynolds and Hanes employees adjust to city life, the YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County has conscientiously and consistently offered programs and services to make our community a better place. In the future, the YWCA sees opportunities to create programs and offer new services that will contribute even more substantially to the local economy.
The YWCA Sports & Wellness Center
The proposed YWCA Sports & Wellness Center is essential to the YWCA’s ability to address the community’s critically important needs. Housed in a 50,000 square foot building with adjacent outdoor playing fields and a track, the center will be highly visible and easily accessible from all parts of the city. Ultimately, the selected six- to eight-acre building site will determine the center’s exact architecture and configuration. Meanwhile, the YWCA’s leaders are working together to determine the sizes and types of spaces required to accommodate the need-based programs and services they plan for the center.
The center’s main entrance will be through a spacious lobby, perhaps decorated with compelling images of female athletes. There will be a central control and information desk near the front door, with food concessions and retail shops for sports apparel and equipment along the lobby’s periphery. There might be a juice bar or a cyber café where members can access the Internet through a wireless network. Teenagers might have their own game room and lounge. Parents might drop young children off at a day care center off the main lobby on their way to a daily workout.
The lobby will lead members and visitors directly to a spacious, multi-purpose gymnasium. Depending on the floor overlays and equipment in place for the day’s events, the gym might be configured to accommodate multiple basketball games, volleyball games, wrestling matches, gymnastics, martial arts, as well as any combination of these and other popular indoor sports and activities. Suspended over the main gym floor will be a full-sized indoor running track. Near the gym, the center will house an indoor, Olympic-sized swimming pool where individuals can work out and amateur swim teams can train and compete.
On practice days, most courts will be in use by various amateur athletes whose teams contract for space by the season. Swim teams will also contract to use the pool for practice and training. On game and tournament days, portable spectator seating will be in place at courtside or poolside to accommodate fans.
At the heart of the center will be two full-service training and fitness areas. One will be for general use by both men and women, with a full complement of exercise equipment for resistance, flexibility and cardiovascular training. The other will be designed and equipped especially for girls and women.
While superficially similar to the co-ed training and fitness area, the women’s area will be specially equipped to accommodate characteristics of women’s physiology that differentiate them from men. Among the considerations that will influence the equipment and programs of the women’s area are these key differences:
- Compared to average adult males, the average adult female is about five inches shorter, 40 pounds lighter and has eight to ten percent more body fat. Besides body size, women differ from men in skeletal shape, especially hip and shoulder width.
- Women have less blood volume, fewer red blood cells and less hemoglobin than men, resulting in a lower capacity to carry oxygen.
- Because they have smaller hearts than men, women have higher resting heart rates and pump a lower volume of blood with each heartbeat.
- Female athletes have a higher risk of knee and hip injuries than males because of their relatively greater Q angle, a measure of the relationship and alignment between the pelvis, leg and foot. The Q angle usually measures about 10 degrees in men and about 15 degrees in women.
- Researchers have identified a cluster of symptoms, the “female athlete triad,” comprised of disordered eating, amenorrhea and osteoporosis, which affects women and girls in many sports. Active girls and women who are driven to excel are most vulnerable.
Within the women’s training and fitness center, individual training programs, performance evaluations and safety precautions will be tailored to these special needs.
Near the training areas, the center will locate a fully-equipped performance laboratory where members can come for individual fitness evaluations, health risk assessments and screenings. The lab will have office spaces where staff members can work on projects and meet with members for private consultations and counseling. Also nearby will be a reference library and media center.
Locker rooms for men and women will be strategically located for easy access from both the gym and the fitness areas, with smaller locker rooms available near the gym for use by visiting teams.
To accommodate exercise classes, lectures and meetings for groups of all sizes, the YWCA Sports & Fitness Center will have a number of multi-purpose classrooms and meeting rooms. For maximum versatility, these spaces will be designed with movable walls or partitions, portable equipment and flexible seating. On any given day or evening, these rooms might accommodate a low-impact aerobics class for seniors, a yoga or Tai Chi class for young adults, a basic skill-building clinic for pre-schoolers, a class on stress management for executives, a workshop on coping with peer pressure for teens, a meeting of a local civic group, or a seminar for volunteer coaches on the special needs of young female athletes. Several classrooms will be designated and furnished for use by after-school program participants, with ample storage space for supplies and reference materials as well as a computer lab for use by students.
Outdoors, the center will have a track and a multi-purpose playing field suitable for soccer, lacrosse, softball and other sports and activities. There will be ample parking for regular members as well as for tournament guests.
All facilities at the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center will be regulation size, designed and equipped to meet applicable AAU regulations and standards.
Initial, relatively conservative financial projections suggest the center will be self-supporting within its first 18 to 24 months of operation. Operating income will be generated by amateur sports teams’ competitions and tournaments, ongoing practice facility and equipment rentals, leased retail space, and fees from new members.
An Innovative ‘First’
With its regulation-size courts and playing fields, its familiar sports and fitness equipment and its steady stream of members and athletes of all ages, shapes and sizes, the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center will have much in common with any number of gymnasiums and fitness facilities. There are, however, several critically important features that will set the center and its programs apart.
- The center will take a ‘best practices’ approach in planning its facilities, programs and operations, based on only the most current and reliable information.
- The center will seek to balance inequities by offering special programs targeted to previously under-served groups within our community.
- The center will collaborate with other organizations and individuals throughout the community to build mutually beneficial partnerships.
- The center will do its part to help advance knowledge relevant to sports and wellness issues, particularly as they pertain to girls and women.
- The center will share its ideas and information with others by serving as a model program for other communities seeking to meet similar needs and achieve similar goals.
Research indicates there is no other similarly designed and equipped facility offering programs and services based on the innovative approaches of the proposed YWCA Sports & Wellness Center. The center will be unique, representing an important “first,” not just for Winston-Salem, but for the entire nation.
A ‘Best Practices’ Approach to Sports & Wellness
While conscientiously taking into account the many time-honored traditions of sports and fitness, all plans for the facilities and programs of the YWCA Sports & Fitness Center will be based on the best, most current knowledge available. Every effort and idea will be examined in light of new and emerging information so that only the best practices will be applied.
A Focus on Physical Activity Instead of Physical Fitness. For many years, medical professionals, coaches and physical educators focused on physical fitness as a goal, using levels of cardiovascular function, strength and speed to measure success. More recently, the emphasis is shifting from seeking to improve quantifiable measures of physical fitness toward simply encouraging ongoing physical activity. A recent report by the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports explains the trend:
There has been a shift away from the importance of developing cardiovascular (aerobic) physical fitness and toward the promotion of life-long physical activity. This change has resulted from an understanding that the biological mechanisms linking exercise to health are not simply related to achieving high cardiovascular function but also in increasing caloric expenditure (obesity), weight-bearing activities (osteoporosis), and muscle strength (back problems, physical incapacity in the elderly). In addition, it has been recognized that most diseases affected by exercise (such as coronary heart disease, hypertension, obesity, and osteoporosis) are a result of life-long processes, surfacing clinically in the older adult years. This observation has prompted an emphasis on promoting exercise habits in children and adolescents as the starting point of a life-style of regular exercise that will be maintained through to adulthood. That is, the introduction of exercise early in life with the key issue of persistence of activity has replaced an emphasis on improving physical fitness to threshold levels.
The new YWCA Sports & Wellness Center will clearly and deliberately reflect these trends. Instead of setting goals and measuring success based on specific physical fitness outcomes, all programs and activities will encourage and enable participants to experience success as an ongoing process. Grounded in these new values, below-average performers can enjoy as much success as the most capable athletes, so long as they remain engaged in their favorite forms of physical activity.
Creating and Sustaining a Motivational Culture. While much is now known about what motivates people to be physically active, the knowledge has yet to be applied effectively and equitably in our society. Instead, a pervasive performance culture, in which the rewards are reserved for the highest achievers, systematically excludes average and below-average performers from participation.
In its 2000 research digest titled, “Motivating Kids in Physical Activity,” the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports described the ideal motivational climate as one which “focuses upon how success is defined, how children are evaluated, what is recognized and valued, and how mistakes are viewed. A mastery motivational climate is one that promotes learning, effort and self-improvement, and mistakes are viewed as part of the learning process. Success is self-referenced, and personal improvements are recognized, praised and emphasized. In contrast, a performance climate emphasizes norm-referenced modes of success, and evaluation for recognition that focuses on favorable comparison to peers.”
From the outset, by creating and sustaining a motivational culture, the new YWCA Sports & Wellness Center will effectively encourage participation and share opportunities for success among all sorts of people at all levels of skill and performance.
Responding to the Special Motives of Girls and Women. While the center’s motivational culture will encourage all to be more physically active, many key programs will clearly reflect current and emerging intelligence about the particular interests and motivations of girls and women.
In a 1998 research digest titled “Psycho-Physiological Contributions of Physical Activity and Sports for Girls,” the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports noted while boys are more likely to be involved in sports because of peer role models and social pressures, girls are more influenced by attitudes of parents and other adult role models such as teachers and coaches. The report also noted, “most girls participate in sport to have fun, improve skills, be with friends and become physically fit while enjoying the challenges and being successful…. Girls seem to be higher in goal orientation or the desire to achieve personal goals while boys seem to be more motivated by winning…. Many girls prefer activities which allow them to work together to improve, or to function cooperatively to accomplish goals rather than competitive activities such as physical fitness testing.”
Trends in the health club industry suggest at least some women are more motivated to be physically active in women-only settings. According to an article in the April 2000 Club Industry magazine, “Out of all the specialty clubs that focus on demographics, women-only facilities have been around the longest. Arguably, they are also the most successful. There’s a simple reason why women-only facilities have stood the test of time: Women don’t always want to work out with men…. At a club for women, members can concentrate on one thing: exercise. They don’t even need to worry about how they look.”
With its exclusive women’s training and fitness area and its special emphasis on programs expressly designed for girls and women, the YWCA Sports & Fitness Center will be especially effective in motivating women who have traditionally patronized women’s health clubs.
Best Practices to Serve At-Risk Youth. The center’s best-practices approach will not be limited to developing innovative sports and athletics programs. The after-school programs for at-risk young people will also reflect the latest understanding of factors leading to success.
Of particular relevance to the YWCA Sports & Fitness Center’s after-school program plans will be research aimed at sports and physical activity as a deterrent to juvenile delinquency. The literature offers a number of studies exploring the role sports can play in keeping young people out of trouble. In “Youth Sports in American: An Overview,” the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports noted, “Considerable evidence has been presented that sports participants are less likely than non-participants to engage in delinquent behavior. Sports may deter delinquency by encouraging less frequent, shorter, or less intense interaction with deviant others. [T]he values emphasized in the sports context—such as teamwork, effort, and achievement—tend toward conventionality and, therefore, may discourage the legitimization of delinquent behavior. The fact that sports involvement reduces the amount of unstructured time and that sports fosters a belief that hard work can lead to just rewards may also influence the negative relationship.”
A Holistic Approach. All programs, services and activities the center offers will be based on a holistic approach, acknowledging the interrelationships among body, mind and spirit. While individual classes and events may be grounded in a single discipline or emphasize a single aspect of the human experience, the overarching goal is to provide a comprehensive program that addresses each challenge as a multifaceted concern and each participant as a whole person.
While physical inactivity, poor nutrition habits and obesity are prevalent among all segments of American society, some groups have more than their share of these serious health risks. Researchers have found significant inequities based on age, race, economic status and gender. For example—
- In a 1996 report on physical activity and health, the Surgeon General noted physical activity is more prevalent among men than women, more prevalent among whites than among blacks and Hispanics, more prevalent among younger than older adults and more prevalent among the more affluent than among the less affluent.
- Researchers have found females are less physically active than males at virtually all ages, and many believe the difference is based on socialization rather than biology.
- An article in the June 24, 1996, issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine noted 37 percent of men 65 and older engaged in physical activity at least 30 minutes three times weekly, compared with 24 percent of their female contemporaries.
- According to the Women’s Sports Foundation, girls enter organized sports two years later than boys and, by age 14, drop out at a rate six times greater than boys. If a girl doesn’t play sports by the time she is ten years old, there is less than a ten percent chance she will be playing at age 25.
- While activity levels decline for both boys and girls during adolescence and into adulthood, the drop-off is more dramatic among girls. At age 13, six to seven percent of all teens report no physical activity. By age nineteen, nearly 25 percent of girls report no physical activity, compared with 20 percent of boys.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released data in October 2002, from the 1999-2000 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey illustrating disparities in health among certain racial and ethnic groups. The survey showed—
- More adult women were obese (33 percent) than men (28 percent), with the problem greatest among non-Hispanic black women (50 percent), compared to Mexican-American women (40 percent) and non-Hispanic white women (30 percent).
- Non-Hispanic black and Mexican-American adolescents, ages 12 to 19, were more likely to be overweight (24 percent) than non-Hispanic white adolescents (13 percent).
- Mexican-American children ages six to 11 were more likely to be overweight (24 percent) than non-Hispanic black children (20 percent) and non-Hispanic white children (12 percent).
In keeping with its mission to empower women and girls and to eliminate racism throughout our community, the YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County will fully exploit the opportunities presented by new YWCA Sports & Wellness Center to balance inequities in health and wellness measures among populations within our community. Through outreach programs aimed at specific racial, cultural and age groups, the center will conscientiously encourage better health among historically under-served, less-healthy populations.
Collaboration & Cooperation
Throughout its history, the YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County has enjoyed mutually beneficial relationships with a number of other organizations and individuals. Such collaborations, designed to draw on community resources and build on community strengths, are an essential element in plans for the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center.
Already, Wake Forest University has agreed to a partnership with the new center. Other key partners in research and education will likely include Winston-Salem State University, Salem College and the Maya Angelou Research Center on Minority Health, a joint effort by Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem State University and Forsyth County to improve health care for minorities.
The Forsyth County Public Library has agreed to maintain a branch at the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center, with materials hand-picked for their pertinence to the interests of its clientele and the needs of the center’s programs. The collection will offer a variety of resources, including books recounting the history and lore of popular sports, inspiring biographies of female athletes, how-to manuals on developing specific skills and techniques, textbooks, and reference materials on nutrition, physiology and sports medicine. A youngster preparing a homework assignment during an after-school study session might visit the library to conduct online research. A coach might visit the library to review rules and regulations for an upcoming AAU-sanctioned event. A young athlete might stop by after a training session to learn more about college sports programs and scholarships available for athletically gifted girls.
The YWCA has secured commitments for support and cooperation not just from organizations, but from key from individuals, too. Kay Yow, head coach at North Carolina State University and one of the most admired and respected coaches in basketball, has already agreed to serve on the center’s Board of Directors. A native of Gibsonville, Yow’s connections to North Carolina’s amateur sports history are strong. Her parents played in the Piedmont textile mill leagues, and her father’s cousin coached the Hanes Hosiery women’s basketball and softball teams to three national titles. She and other outstanding leaders in sports, health and fitness will play vital roles in the life of the center.
For researchers, clinicians and students, partnership with the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center will provide countless opportunities to test theories and advance knowledge. Through the performance laboratory, medical school students can observe firsthand the effects of training programs on individuals and populations of interest. Psychology students can conduct research on motivations for good health habits, while sociology students can explore pertinent issues among targeted populations. Undergraduate students from Wake Forest’s Department of Health and Exercise Science and Winston-Salem State’s Human Performance & Sports Sciences program can gain real world experience at the center as interns, while a Wake Forest graduate student’s research project could be a topic for a master’s thesis. Medical clinicians can prescribe ongoing training and rehabilitation programs for patients and access progress reports through the Internet. Students in Winston-Salem State’s School of Education can see classroom concepts come alive among students in the after-school programs.
By building and maintaining such strong, mutually-beneficial partnerships within the educational and medical communities, the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center will add immeasurable quality and depth to its programs and services. For its public education programs, the center will have direct access to eminently qualified guest speakers on virtually any health- or fitness-related topic. The center can also turn to our local experts for help with staff training. Women’s university and college sports teams may be tapped to serve as role models for aspiring young female athletes. Their coaches might be invited to conduct workshops and seminars for professional and volunteer coaches on the art and science of coaching girls’ and women’s teams.
For the members of the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center, these cooperative relationships will guarantee access to expertise and other resources vastly beyond what the center could offer on its own. For the price of a YWCA center membership, people from throughout our community can tap into the best information available on issues related to their health and wellbeing. They can invest their time and energy in the center’s programs, confident these programs offer them the best possible chances for success because their design is based on the best available knowledge.
By building strategic alliances with selected manufacturers and service providers, the center will further advance its goals and enhance its services by offering corporate partners invaluable opportunities to build brand equity. For example, a manufacturer of fitness equipment might equip one of the training and fitness areas in exchange for having its name and logo displayed prominently on the wall. A medical equipment manufacturer might offer researchers in the performance lab the use of a prototypical product in exchange for their real-world evaluation of the proposed design. A manufacturer of athletic shoes for women might fund research and supply product to test designs intended to reduce the risk of knee injuries among female athletes. A sportswear manufacturer might gain considerable goodwill by outfitting an amateur team based at the new center. With its constant flow of female athletes of all ages, interests and levels of fitness, the center will also be a prime retail location for any manufacturer of sports- and health-related products.
As a natural outgrowth of its cooperative relationships with corporations, foundations and researchers in medicine and education, the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center intends to play a role in the ongoing advancement of important knowledge. In particular, the center expects to contribute to the understanding of issues related to girls’ and women’s health and sports participation. With its medical and educational connections, its broad-based clientele and its special emphasis on girls’ and women’s issues, the center will be ideally positioned to foster genuine progress in such fields as sports medicine, education, health sciences, bariatrics, public health, juvenile justice and geriatrics.
A Model Program
The YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County is breaking new ground with its plans for the YWCA Sports & Fitness Center. Although the urgent needs the center will meet are common throughout our nation, there is no other program quite like it. Once the center is up and running, the staff will welcome inquiries and visits from people interested in developing similar facilities and programs to benefit their communities. As a model program, the center may well be the first of many such centers, extending its impact and reputation well beyond the boundaries of the greater Winston-Salem community.
The YWCA Sports & Fitness Center will ultimately have the greatest value and significance in the changes it promotes the lives of the girls, women and families. For example, the center’s success at motivating increases in physical activity will bring significant improvements to each participant’s personal health and quality of life. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention—
- In adults, physical activity improves cardio-respiratory endurance, flexibility, and muscular strength and endurance, may reduce obesity, alleviate depression and anxiety and build bone mass density.
- Physically active and physically fit adults are less likely than sedentary adults to develop the chronic diseases that cause most of the morbidity and mortality in the United States: cardiovascular disease, hypertension, non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus and cancer of the colon.
- All-cause mortality rates are lower among physically active than sedentary people.
- In young people, regular physical activity improves aerobic endurance and muscular strength and may favorably affect risk factors for cardiovascular disease (e.g., body mass index, blood lipid profiles and resting blood pressure).
- Regular physical activity among children and adolescents with chronic disease risk factors is important: it decreases blood pressure in adolescents with borderline hypertension, increases physical fitness in obese children and decreases the degree of overweight among obese children.
In addition to enjoying substantial improvements in physical health, members of the YWCA Sports & Fitness Center will also derive other important benefits. For example, the Women’s Sports Foundation has identified a number of positive psychological and behavioral changes that can be brought about by participation in sports programs such as those to be offered at the center.
- Women who are active in sports and recreation as girls feel greater confidence, self-esteem and pride in their physical and social selves than those who were sedentary as children.
- Half of all girls who participate in sports have higher-than-average levels of self-esteem and lower rates of depression.
- High school girls who spend more time participating in sports tend to have higher grades and are more likely to graduate than girls who do not play sports.
- Teenage female athletes are less likely to use marijuana, cocaine or other illicit drugs, less likely to be suicidal, less likely to smoke and more likely to have positive body images than females who are not athletes.
- Teenage female athletes are less than half as likely to get pregnant, more likely to report never having had sexual intercourse and more likely to experience their first sexual intercourse at a later age than non-athletes.
The at-risk children and adolescents who participate in after-school programs at the center will enjoy important additional benefits. Researchers studying such programs have documented increases in finished homework assignments, improvements in English and mathematics grades and fewer school suspensions resulting from students’ participation.
Changing the Life of Our Community
The aggregate health and wellbeing of the citizens living in a community determine the state of its public health. Any health improvements made by individuals contribute to the overall health of the community. Similarly, effective interventions in the lives of at-risk young people not only improve their individual chances for personal success, but contribute to general public safety as well. In these ways, the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center will, by serving individuals, serve the community.
For the business community, the center will play a pivotal role in bringing new revenues to Winston-Salem. Amateur sports teams’ games, meets and tournaments will be big business. In addition to the rental fees for the use of the center’s facilities, visiting team members, coaches and parents will rent hotel rooms, eat restaurant meals, refill gas tanks and make other purchases in our community.
Total dollars spent can be substantial. For example, Chattanooga, Tennessee, estimated the economic impact of a full roster of community sports events during 2002 to total $23,656,000, including—
- $150,000 from a district swimming championship
- $210,000 from a gymnastics competition
- $320,000 from a state wrestling tournament
- $365,000 from a national wrestling competition
- $510,000 from girls’ softball tournaments
- $790,000 from a tae kwon do organization tournament
- $1,200,000 from a cheerleading competition
- $5,830,000 from a National Softball Association’s Class A Girls Fast-Pitch Tournament
Closer to home, the economic benefits of amateur sports have also proved considerable.
- North Carolina Amateur Sports, organizers of the annual State Games and Senior Games, estimate the economic impact of their events at $8.2 million.
- The Greater Raleigh Convention & Visitors Bureau estimated revenues of $2.9 million brought to the city by the 2001 Protect Our Nation’s Youth Girls Fast Pitch Tournament.
- The North Carolina High School Athletic Association committed to holding its 2002-2004 Cross Country State Championships and the 2003-2005 Individual Wrestling State Championships in Forsyth County. Winston-Salem is also a finalist for the 2002-2004 Football State Championships. The three tournaments combined will bring an estimated $2.2 million annual revenue to Forsyth County.
- The Winston-Salem Convention and Visitors Bureau estimated revenues of more than $750,000 from a nine-day national basketball tournament for girls hosted by the local AAU chapter.
- The North Carolina Youth Soccer Association estimated a three-day soccer competition in Salisbury would bring at least $400,000 in revenue to the community.
As more communities take note of the benefits accruing to hosts of amateur sporting events, competition will most certainly intensify. The competitive edge will belong to communities with the best facilities. As home to the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center, Winston-Salem will be well positioned to attract its share of these lucrative regional and national events to the city. As an especially visible, progressive new community asset, the center will also support the efforts of corporate recruiters working to attract new businesses to the area.
The $5 million campaign to build the YWCA Sports & Fitness Center will be an ambitious, far-reaching joint effort of staff, board members, volunteers and friends of the YWCA. Led by chairperson, Drewry Hanes Nostitz, a longtime supporter of the YWCA, the campaign will reach out to a broad, diverse constituency of potential contributors.
Volunteers will visit individual, organizational and corporate prospects throughout the greater Winston-Salem area, describing the proposed center and soliciting their participation in the campaign. The campaign will encourage both generosity and participation as vital to its success.
Beyond the immediate community, the campaign will seek support from foundations, corporations and other organizations with special interests in the center’s mission and programs.
Once the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center is in operation, corporate sponsors might turn to the center and its research partners to conduct studies of special interest and relevance to their product development and marketing efforts.
After nearly a century of outstanding service to our community, the YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County is now ready to progress to a dramatically higher level of beneficial service. The proposed YWCA Sports & Wellness Center is essential to the organization’s ability to realize its ambitious plans.
Whether you are a brand manager for a line of women’s active wear, a researcher in sports medicine, a volunteer coach for a new girls’ amateur team, a local hotel manager or restaurateur, the parent of an Olympic hopeful or a troubled teen, or an individual committed to lowering your risk of heart attack, the center is most worthy of your interest and support. With your gift to the campaign, you initiate far-reaching, long-lasting positive changes in the lives of individual girls, women and families that will ultimately have a profound impact within and well beyond the community where we live.
According to census projections, 167,885 of North Carolina’s 4,386,309 girls and women will live in Forsyth County by summer 2004. With your help, these women and girls will be among the first of thousands whose lives will be changed for the better by the programs and services of the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center. The staff of the YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County, the center’s campaign chairman and committee members appreciate your thoughtful consideration of the opportunity the center represents and encourage you to lend your full support.
Naming & Memorial Opportunities
In planning the campaign, the YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County has created a number of naming and memorial opportunities to recognize exceptional levels of generosity. You are encouraged to review them and consider which among them would be most meaningful for you, your family or your organization.
Ways of Giving
Donors to the YWCA Sports & Wellness Center Campaign may make one-time gifts or may fulfill their pledges over a period of five years. Gifts of cash as well as gifts of stocks, bonds, real estate and other assets of value are welcome. The YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization; all gifts are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law. Various options for giving are outlined below.
Current Giving Opportunities
Cash. Money by check is the easiest and most common way to make a gift. Cash gifts may be used annually as charitable deductions on your federal income tax return to offset up to 50 percent of your adjusted gross income. You may carry forward any unused deductions over the next five years.
Appreciated Securities. Gifts of appreciated securities such as stocks, mutual fund shares and bonds, which you have owned longer than six months, are fully tax-deductible charitable contributions, including the difference between what you paid for the security and its market value when donated. Such gifts are deductible annually up to 30 percent of your adjusted annual gross income on your federal tax return with the same five-year carry-over deduction provision as cash gifts. Remember that you must give the security itself, rather than selling it first and giving the cash, in order to avoid paying tax on the capital gain.
Real Estate. The same tax advantages that apply to stocks and bonds also apply to real estate. You may give acreage, a farm, a lot, a house, a commercial building, or any other kind of real estate held longer than six months and receive a charitable deduction for the full market value and also avoid taxes on the profit.
Tangible Personal Property. You may give any other asset of value; for example, an automobile, a painting, a coin collection, a piece of jewelry or equipment, etc., and receive a charitable deduction.
Corporate Gifts. Corporations are permitted by law to give away to qualified charitable organizations up to 10 percent of their pre-tax profits in any given fiscal year. This provision is a double tax saving in that neither the corporation nor the individual is taxed on the gift.
Deferred Giving Opportunities
In addition to current pledges to the campaign, alternate giving strategies should be considered. Listed below are several planned or deferred giving opportunities that will enable you to make an even larger overall response to the YWCA of Winston-Salem. The campaign consultant will be glad to review which type of planned gift is most appropriate for you.
Charitable Gift Annuities. A gift annuity is a contract between you as the donor and the YWCA of Winston-Salem where, in exchange for a gift of cash or marketable securities, the YWCA of Winston-Salem will promise to pay you a guaranteed income stream for life. The annuity can be for one life or two, which means you and your spouse can enjoy this income stream at a percentage based on your life expectancy.
Charitable Remainder Trusts. Individuals most often use a charitable trust with low basis assets that produce little or no income. Selling the asset and reinvesting for income will generate an unacceptable capital gains tax. When the asset is gifted to a charitable remainder trust, no capital gains tax is paid so the full amount can be reinvested to provide lifetime income to the donor or the donor and spouse.
Charitable Lead Trusts. A charitable lead trust is the opposite of the remainder trust. It provides an income stream to the YWCA of Winston-Salem for the term of the trust and then trust assets revert to family-typically children or grandchildren. The primary benefit to the donor of a lead trust is that it can produce significant gift tax as well as estate tax savings while shifting assets to heirs outside of the estate.
Life Insurance. By giving an insurance policy already in force, you will receive a charitable deduction for the cash value of the policy. You may take out a new insurance policy on your life, or assign one already in force, naming the YWCA of Winston-Salem as the owner and beneficiary. The premiums will be tax-deductible.
Retention of Life Interest Gift. You may give a personal residence or farm and retain lifetime use of the property. You will receive an immediate charitable deduction for the remainder value of the gift based on your age. The property is removed from your estate for tax purposes. The donor is responsible for taxes, insurance, and maintenance. At your death or the death of the surviving spouse, the gift becomes the property of the YWCA of Winston-Salem.
Retirement Plan. You may name the YWCA of Winston-Salem as the beneficiary of all or a portion of a retirement plan such as an IRA or Keogh Plan. The trustee of the plan will help you make that beneficiary designation. Upon your death, the gift will come to the YWCA of Winston-Salem without probate. Or, if you choose, you can name a charitable remainder trust the beneficiary of the retirement plan. Then your heirs can receive the income for life or a term of years with the remainder going to the YWCA of Winston-Salem.
A Living Trust. You may name the YWCA of Winston-Salem as a co-owner with right of survivorship of any savings account. Upon your death, that account becomes the property of the YWCA of Winston-Salem automatically and without probate.
A Bequest Through Your Will. You may name the YWCA of Winston-Salem in your will, or in a codicil to your will, for a specific dollar amount, a percentage of your estate or as a final contingent beneficiary.
The YWCA of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County Board of Directors must approve all gifts, other than cash and marketable securities. The campaign consultant will be happy to assist you by providing additional information about making various types of gifts for your greatest tax advantage.
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