Sanokfa Wellness Center
Jun 20, 2024

All In as We Work to Establish a Presence in Every Community 

In early 2023, the YMCA of Metro Chicago was overjoyed to learn that the Pritzker Traubert Foundation had awarded The Chicago Prize to the Sankofa Wellness Village! The Y is honored to be a part of this collaborative, community-led initiative that will create trusted, safe, comfortable, culturally empowering spaces and services in the West Garfield Park neighborhood.  

With this major capital investment, we expect to open the doors of the West Garfield Park YMCA in 2025. Upon completion, the Wellness Village and the Y will include primary care, drop-in childcare, youth enrichment, fitness programming, mental health services, workforce development, a business incubator, a community-led credit union, and a community-owned grocery store. These services, spaces, and more will be primarily housed in a 60,000 square foot facility that will serve tens of thousands of community members annually.  

The Y also announced in 2023 that our organization would be a major partner in the Assemble Chicago development in Chicago’s Loop neighborhood. Assemble Chicago is a proposed mixed-use development in the heart of downtown Chicago that will also provide apartments affordable to a range of incomes, a wellness clinic, and a restaurant opening onto a revitalized Pritzker Park.    

In addition to serving as an anchor for Assemble Chicago, the Loop YMCA will re-establish the YMCA of Metro Chicago’s community presence in the city’s downtown area. Because of the central location and public-transit proximity, the Loop Y will serve and be accessible to a wide range of individuals, families, and groups, including business commuters, students, youth, visitors to Chicago, nearby residents, and more.   

Following the Y’s mobilization to open the doors of our former High Ridge YMCA to new Chicago arrivals, Y leaders and stakeholders worked on a plan to eventually reopen the High Ridge Y on a permanent basis. Major congressional support was secured for this initiative by Illinois Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky. The Y is committed to hosting our new neighbors for the duration of the ongoing humanitarian crisis. Once the High Ridge Y is no longer needed as a host site for this program, we will share our reopening plan.  

The opening or reopening of these three sites demonstrates our commitment to serving more of Chicagoland’s communities. We will increase our impact from serving 300,000 individuals annually to serving more than 1,000,000 individuals each year — and to establish a presence in each community area in Chicago and across the region.