Local businesses and individuals are joining the Penobscot Bay YMCA in its drive to bring programs and services to Rockland.

By donating to the Y’s $300,000 financial development campaign for a satellite facility in Rockland, these contributors are generating funds from an anonymous $100,000 matching opportunity.

Several local business people, mindful of the benefits the new program center will bring to the region have joined with Penobscot Bay YMCA board members and other volunteers in a Rockland Program Center Task Force to donate funds themselves and encourage others to do the same.

Volunteers serving on the task force include Dan Bookham, Jim Butler, Andrew Clement, Jim Nelson, Bill Leone, Y Executive Director Troy Curtis, and Y Board President Leslie Eaton.

"The Penobscot Bay YMCA and this community are fortunate to have individuals who are willing to volunteer their time to ask others to financially support projects, such as the new Rockland Program Center. Without their dedication and support, it would be difficult to move these projects forward," Eaton said in a news release.

The planned program center at 12 Water St. will include a fitness center, indoor and outdoor exercise areas and a childcare center. Programs to be offered include day care for infants through pre-schoolers, after-school programming for school age children, and senior exercise offerings, along with the LIVESTRONG at the YMCA wellness program for cancer survivors. The center is designed to make Y activities more accessible to Southern Knox County residents.

“The Penobscot Bay YMCA childcare program will provide working families in Rockland an affordable option,” said Clement, a business unit manager at Fisher Engineering in Rockland. “Everything from infant care to after-school programing will be available right in town.”

Allen Insurance and Financial President Michael Pierce, whose company was an early contributor to the campaign, emphasized the Penobscot Bay YMCA’s exceptional reputation with health and wellness programs.

“The Y’s expansion into Southern Knox County should give many more people access to activities that promote a healthier lifestyle,” said Pierce.

Alvin Chase, co-owner of Eastern Tire, understands the value of community service. “The Penobscot Bay YMCA’s expansion into the Rockland area reinforces the organization’s desire to serve everyone in and around Knox County,” said Chase, explaining his company’s early support of this fundraising drive. “Current members of the Y will benefit from the newest location as well, since it will bring some programs and services closer to them.”

Down East Enterprise is another of the businesses to make an early commitment. "The Penobscot Bay YMCA makes a difference in countless lives, and the Rockland Program Center will only add to that good work. We're thrilled to be a part of the effort," said President and CEO Bob Fernald.

To join the partnership program, contact Y Executive Director Troy Curtis at 236-3375.