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Ann and Betty's Story

“They’re all so kind, caring and compassionate. I feel different when I come out from when I go in. The Y picks me up. And my Betty is always my steady.”
-Ann C.

Read more of their story here.


Sarah's Story

“My favorite part is helping the little kids whenever they need help. Second would be helping with field trips to the zoo and library.”
-Sarah J.

Read more of her story here.


Gwen's Story

“Lots of us who work here have letters from people like this who thank the Y for making a difference in their lives both large and small. The Y is a resource in our community for everyone—including organizations and businesses.”
-Gwen, Community and Member Engagement Manager

Read more of her story here.


Dave's Story

“This is something I was told that I would never do. They told me that I would be in a wheelchair for the rest of my life and that I would never walk. I said, ‘Not me.’”
-Dave C.

Read more of his story here.


Maggie's Story

“This community is affluent; but, just below the surface is another population living here that is barely getting by. They are hard-working families, many who clean homes and work in the landscape business,” Maggie said, adding, “They are so humble and grateful to receive financial assistance awards from the Y.”
-Maggie, Member Assistance Coordinator

Read more of her story here.


Mollie's Story

“I loved swimming all of my life. I really found a wonderful place to swim at the Madison Area YMCA. There aren’t many places like this. Everyone is just so nice - It’s a wonderful pool. I could sleep here, it’s so great!” 
-Mollie, 95-year-old Madison Area YMCA member

Nancy S

Nancy's Story

"Cancer puts us to the test. The Madison Area YMCA’s LIVESTRONG® at the YMCA program provided one of the answers for me – a support program so that we can thrive. Exercise, good nutrition and the Y’s open heart helped me pass with an A+”
-Nancy S.

Click here to read a LIVESTRONG at the YMCA graduate's inspirational testimonial.


Leigh Anne's Story

"When my mom passed away, the Madison Area YMCA and my Y family gave me everything I needed. I give because everyone in the community should have the opportunity to experience the love the Y has to offer."
-Leigh Anne S.

Stephanie F-circle

Stephanie's Story

"Madison Area YMCA helped me get through this change. Not only did they provide me with the emotional support, but also the financial support to allow for my children to attend the high quality programs they provide here at Kirby and the Family Center. The peace of mind they gave me is immeasurable. I am grateful for the opportunities that my children have been given and proud to be an employee for this important organization that helps so many families each day."
-Stephanie F.

Larissa Wilson family-circle

Larissa's Story

“On a friend’s recommendation, we checked out the Madison Area YMCA. From the moment we walked in, it felt like home. The staff, volunteers and members were all so welcoming that we joined that day! I was amazed at all of the wonderful programs for children and adults. My husband and I both enjoy our membership at the Y, including the fitness center and group fitness classes. Most importantly, we feel so fortunate to be able to provide our children with opportunities to grow and learn at the Y. Our daughter Abby loves getting stronger and building her muscles in gymnastics class, learning new dance moves in ballet, practicing water safety in swimming class and playing with her friends in Kids Central. Our son, Ryan, can’t wait to go to gym class every week and is equally enthusiastic about swimming class! I am proud to be a part of the Annual Campaign and to help the Y provide these opportunities to families who cannot afford it on their own.”
-Larissa W.

Why the Y

  • Beautiful Beth: A Why the Y Story

    Oct 16, 2018

    Jim Jane Chelsea

    Being out on the bocce court at the Madison Area YMCA’s annual charity bocce tournament this fall had a special significance for Jim Patterson. The tournament, which raises funds for the Y’s paths to wellness programming, includes LIVESTRONG at the YMCA. Jim knows LIVESTRONG well. “Beautiful Beth” as Jim describes his late wife and best friend of 35 years and mother of their 16-year-old daughter Janie, who has Down syndrome, was a graduate of the December 2016 LIVESTRONG at the YMCA class. Beth had bravely battled ovarian cancer twice over two years, for the last time this past summer.

    “Beth enjoyed her LIVESTRONG experience,” says Jim. “It gave back her energy, strength, balance and hope. Most importantly, it gave us more quality time with Beth and allowed her to have a ‘bucket list’ dream ski vacation with me, Janie and friends. Beth skied circles around me! That certainly made her proud,” he reminisces.

    Jim points out how everyone at the Y, whether they were staff members or Y members, just embraced his daughter from the start. The bocce team, Great Balls of Fire, also made Janie an honorary captain. “We are so happy to be part of the Y community,” says Jim. “The Y staff always knew what to say to Janie to make her feel better about her mom.”

    To show his gratitude to the Y, Jim plans to share Beth’s story at the banquet next week that closes the 17th annual bocce tournament. “I have to make sure I deliver the message that Beth would want,” says Jim, noting Beth’s eloquence and gift for writing.

    Click here to read on.

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