With its affordable living, vibrant economy and excellent cultural venues, the 12th District of Texas is a highly desirable place to live, work, and raise a family.   It’s easy to understand why Fort Worth has grown to the become the 13th largest city in the United States.

Local companies and organizations that invest in our city deserve to be highlighted for their efforts to better our community.   

Today, I want to commend one of those great partners, the YMCA of Metropolitan Fort Worth.  I am grateful for the wonderful work they do locally, especially in areas that are often underserved.

For over 131 years, our YMCA has been an indispensable part of Fort Worth and contributor to the metroplex community, promoting a healthy spirit, mind, and body for all.   As they have grown and expanded over the decades, I have witnessed their proven track record of service.

Recently, I met with Mike Brown, the president and CEO of the YMCA of Metropolitan Fort Worth. 

Mike has worked diligently to keep community leaders informed about the great projects going on at the Y.   I’ve heard him say many times that the YMCA is far more than just a place to exercise or take swimming lessons, and I couldn’t agree more.  The work they do truly makes a difference in people’s lives. 

Known for their outdoor swimming pools and open recreational spaces, they certainly live up to their reputation as a fun place to be during the hot Texas summers, but they do much more than just serve as a place for summer activities.

For instance, once the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the YMCA lent a helping hand to many in need.  When many places were forced to close due to safety precautions, Fort Worth’s Y opened their doors to serve our community. 

During the pandemic, the YMCA of Metropolitan Fort Worth supplied much-needed assistance to families experiencing food insecurity.  Since September of 2020, they have served nearly 300,000 healthy meals and snacks to residents in Tarrant County, and nationally, the Y has served over 39 million meals and snacks to more than 500,000 children.  

In addition to the assistance they provided during the height of the pandemic, the YMCA of Metropolitan Fort Worth plays an ongoing role in helping safeguard the health and safety of our community. 

Their sharp focus on drowning prevention is at the core of their water-safety programs.  Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death for children ages 1-4, with an average of two children dying nationally every day.  Evidence shows that in Tarrant County swimming lessons are having an enormous effect on lowering the drowning rate thanks to the efforts of the Y.  

For the older and maturing child, they have created programs that teach the benefits of volunteering and giving back.  Teenagers have many opportunities to work on character development and learn about leadership and civic involvement thanks to the Y. 

Many YMCA branches keep their facilities open into the evening so that local teens have a safe and positive atmosphere in which to engage.  Youth-development professionals and mentors encourage students to build a plan of achievement following high school.  

In my role as the lead Republican on the House Appropriations Committee, I am dedicated to ensuring our community and those throughout the nation get the funding needed to implement programs that support the vulnerable and the next generation.

It has been an honor of mine to receive their Congressional Champion Award for many years, and I am delighted to hear that our Y was recently awarded critical funding which will assist them in recovering from the pandemic and continuing to serve our community.  

I’m grateful for the valuable work that Mike Brown, his colleagues, and the many volunteers are doing to support children, families, and senior citizens in TX-12 and across our country.  

The commitment of the YMCA of Metropolitan Fort Worth to promote health and wellness in our community is a true example of servanthood, and their impact will be felt for generations to come.