$3.5 million in renovations: What big changes are coming to the YWCA York?

Tina Locurto
York Dispatch
YWCA York in York City, Friday, July 9, 2021. Dawn J. Sagert photo

Jean Treuthart hopes to restore the YWCA York building back to its "former glory" as an iconic landmark in the historic district of York City.

The York branch, located at 320 E. Market St., is in need of some "TLC," as Treuthart put it. The repairs to the building are part of a much larger list of aspirations at the YWCA, all part of the nonprofit's $3.5 million capital campaign.

The YWCA's campaign aims to improve much-needed aesthetics to both its Camp Cann-Edi-On in York Haven and to Access York, which is York County's domestic violence and sexual assault shelter.

“I think what I'm most looking forward to is what I said about Access York physically feeling like this safe space and welcoming environment," Treuthart said. "It is that way because the staff is so incredible, but the physical space has to match that."

On Thursday, the YWCA entered into its "public phase" of its campaign at the same time exiting its "quiet phase" — typically the time to receive donations from grants, corporations and foundations.

So far, the YWCA has raised about $2.9 million. In addition to repairs and aesthetic upgrades, the capital campaign also will retire $600,000 in debt.

“My goal is that the YWCA won’t need to have another capital campaign in 10 years," Treuthart said. 

The nonprofit began its capital campaign in March 2020 — but then the pandemic hit, causing officials to pause all efforts.

The organization resumed its fundraising in 2021, though some projects started last year due to federal funding imposing time limits on the completion of such tasks.

The YWCA's main building, for example, is already undergoing construction. The building's exterior will be revamped, its children's care facility will be expanded, and a community room will be added.

“That's going to be wonderful, because there’s not a lot of big space in the City of York for events or meetings," Treuthart said of the community room.

In addition to the nonprofit's main building getting some repairs, Access York's shelter is getting a top-to-bottom renovation. The shelter's kitchen, bedrooms and dining room will be updated, and the top floor will be transformed into a meeting space for support groups.

“It's not as welcoming of a space as we want it to be," Treuthart said. "If you can imagine a mom and her two kids fleeing home at two in the morning and arriving at Access, we want it to feel more homey."

Lastly, the YWCA York will be upgrading Camp Cann-Edi-On, located at 800 Sheepbridge Road. Treuthart said she aims to construct a new building that will be used for storage of camp equipment, in addition to renovating the recreation hall.

A picnic pavilion could also be added to the list of construction goals if the YWCA York is able to reach its fundraising goals, Treuthart said.

— Reach Tina Locurto at tlocurto@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @tina_locurto.