Fostering Community Building
When Rod Molle came in for his volunteer shift to help open the largest YMCA in Canada, he was worried.
“To see a lineup that was literally taking an hour and a half to get through…holy mackerel,” he remembers.
Rod was a tour volunteer that was right in the thick of opening the Shane Homes YMCA in Rocky Ridge. In partnership with the City of Calgary, YMCA is now operating this brand new, 284,000 square foot facility in northwest Calgary. Turns out, it became the fastest growing YMCA community in Canadian history.
“People were just so giddy to be the first ones in line to come through that building, just vibrating to get in,” says Rod, remembering the excitement of that first day. “People were just giggling and laughing and just having a great ol’ time. It was fun.”
This new facility is much more than the gym and pool that the YMCA is most known for. It is a centre of community where people of every age, background and income bracket can stay active and healthy, follow their passions and connect with others.
According to Rod, “when you have a building that is open to all and is not just a fitness club ― it is a pool, skating rink, live performing arts, theatre ― it is for everybody, from ages 0 – 102. It will impact the community for many, many decades to come.”
Thanks to volunteers like Rod, everyone is excited to become more familiar with the new YMCA, creating an instant sense of community.