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Winona Family YMCA offers pre-K camps amid COVID-19 concerns
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Winona Family YMCA offers pre-K camps amid COVID-19 concerns

The Winona Family YMCA will offer pre-K camps while its doors are closed to regular use amid COVID-19 concerns.

With the permission of Gov. Tim Walz, the YMCA will be able to offer this child-care opportunity to parents whose jobs fall into Tier I or Tier II level for being a necessity to our community, like health-care professionals or grocery store clerks.

The children will enjoy activities and movement while being separated into groups of 10 children. Each group will be in its own room to allow for social distancing.

It is undetermined yet what the maximum amount of children allowed will be, but there may be room for as many as 80 children.

Children, along with staff, will experience daily health screenings. A new drop-off plan will be in place.

The rooms will be frequently sanitized.

This possibility will allow some YMCA staff to have work while the facility is closed for regular activities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Lunches each day will be provided by Winona Area Public Schools, while caregivers are recommended to send snacks with their children.

“It means a lot to be able to hopefully make a small difference in the community. It’s been really hard for me personally with everything that’s gone on over the last week. And so this is just a small bright spot of service to the community,” Janneke Sobek, CEO of the Winona Family YMCA, said.

“That’s what the Y does. That’s what it’s done for almost 135 years in Winona and we’re just trying to support people that are really going through some hard times and stepping up in a need of service,” she said.

The child-care opportunity will be available starting Tuesday. Hours will be from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Children can be dropped off any time between 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. They should be picked up between 5 and 5:30 p.m.

For YMCA members, the cost is $25 per day. For non-members, it is $30 per day. Financial assistance is available to help with these costs.

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