Core Values in Action: Swim Team Sends Essential Shipment to Tornado-Ravaged Mayfield Graves YMCA in Kentucky

My Y Story: YMCA Storm Swim Team


This story starts with a compassionate teenager who is also Y STORM swim team competitor. While at a swim meet near Boston on December 12, Teagen Jeffers sent an email to Joe Manzoli, the Y’s chief operating officer. “I had an idea that I might need some assistance with. Watching the news, I’m sure you have heard about the horrible devastation in the town of Mayfield and surrounding areas due to the tornado Friday night. With this being so close to Christmas, and the amount of devastation occurring, that community has lost a whole lot. I am hoping to raise money through our Swim Team, and even the Y to help them out. I was wondering if you would be able to connect me to someone at the Mayfield Graves YMCA, so I can ask them what the most effective way to help would be,” she emailed.

The next day, Joe reached out to the Executive Director of the Mayfield Graves County YMCA and left him a message. Joe shared, “They are a VERY small YMCA and so I’m sure he is stretched thin right now. I also reached out to the CEO of the YMCA in Lexington as I saw online that they were supporting Mayfield. She got back to me and said that the Exec at Mayfield is working on finding housing for his staff right now, but gave me some ideas on how to help.” He added, “Thank you so much for thinking of the people of that part of Kentucky. I’ve seen a lot of storm damage on TV over the years and this might be among the worst I’ve seen. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a tornado reduce entire towns to rubble like this.”

After much consideration about how best to help, the swim team decided to take up a collection of non-perishable food items and other everyday care items, such as first aid supplies, cleaning supplies, personal hygiene items, and baby care essentials.

Teagan’s father works for Yellow, a shipping company in Bedford, who generously donated the shipping of a 300-pound pallet of goods to Mayfield, Kentucky.

Cheers to Teagan and the STORM swim team who live the YMCA’s core values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. And huge thank you to Yellow, for transporting this donation.


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