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Manchester-by-the-Sea resident makes hefty donation to Greater Beverly YMCA

Posted by Terri Ogan  June 19, 2013 09:01 AM

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From left to right: Ralph Bates, Beth Francis (YMCA of the North Shore Chief Development Officer), James Polese (Morgan Stanley), Greg Meahl (Greater Beverly YMCA Board Member) and Judith Cronin (Greater Beverly YMCA Executive Director).

A Manchester-by-the-Sea resident has donated $150,000 to the Greater Beverly YMCA, which is the largest annual operating gift from a single donor that the organization has ever received, according to Rob Thatcher, the Y's financial development associate.

Ralph Bates of Manchester-by-the-Sea donated $75,000 to support the Y and offered an additional $75,000 if the Y could raise matching funds by May 17. The Y met that challenge, raising $75,000 by the deadline.

“Ralph presented us with this matching gift challenge and I knew we would succeed in raising the money,” said Judith Cronin, executive director of the Greater Beverly YMCA, in a recent announcement. “I want to thank Ralph for his generosity and deep desire to help those in need. I also want to thank our community for their support of this fund-raising campaign. With these donations, we’ll be able to provide even more opportunities to our neighbors who count on the Y for childcare and summer camp as well as youth development and healthy lifestyle programs.”

In order to raise the matching funds, the Y implemented a 30-day strategy entailing internal marketing, e-mail messaging to members and donors, and a fund-raising component through Razoo.com, a crowdfunding for causes website, Thatcher said.

One in five people receive financial assistance each year at the Greater Beverly Y, totaling more than $700,000.

“I feel so bad about people who don’t have anything,” Bates said. “I used to be a member of the Woburn Y many years ago and I would go there to play basketball. I thought that was what the Y was all about, until I met the folks at the Greater Beverly Y. They told me about the great charitable work they do. I know they help a lot of people.”

One hundred percent of every donation to the YMCA’s Y For All Annual Campaign supports the Y's Financial Assistance Program. Through financial assistance, the Y provides essential programs and services to local children, families, and individuals who would otherwise be unable to afford them.

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