031518 Lompoc YMCA Victory Dinner Lucy and Stephanie

YMCA board member Lucy Thoms-Harrington gifts Lompoc Family YMCA Branch Manager Stephanie Saucedo a Wonder Woman doll during last month's victory celebration for the 2018 Annual Campaign. The doll had a note that read: 'To: Stephanie Saucedo Y Campaign Wonder Woman. Thanks for all you do!!!' The YMCA reported that this year's campaign raised $86,000.

Volunteers, staff and other supporters of the Lompoc Family YMCA gathered at Events Mission Valley last month for a victory celebration after raising $86,000 for this year’s Annual Campaign.

More than 50 people attended the celebration, which was held March 15. A group of 34 volunteers helped raise the money, which will go to help children and adults access YMCA programs, such as summer day camp, teen development, senior fitness, sports, after-school care, the LIVESTRONG cancer survivor program and memberships, according to the YMCA.

“The dinner is a celebration of our efforts and a huge thank you to the volunteers who helped us during campaign,” said Stephanie Saucedo, interim branch manager for the Lompoc Family YMCA.

Sal Cisneros, CEO and president of the Channel Islands YMCA, was unable to attend the dinner, but he addressed the guests in a video. In his video, Cisneros discussed how he came to understand the YMCA 35 years ago.

“I quickly learned that the YMCA is built on people that give up their time, talent and treasury to make a difference in their communities,” he said.

At the end of his speech, Cisneros honored and congratulated Shelly Dixon and her late husband, Jim Dixon, who were the honorary chairs of this year’s campaign.

“Jim had this desire and this deep-seated need to tell the story of the YMCA to the community,” Cisneros said. “He wanted to serve the city of Lompoc … and he wanted to make a difference in the lives of the youth and families that we serve through the YMCA. He is one of the stories that we uphold as being those people that will forever make a difference in the lives of others.”

Also during the celebration, the YMCA recognized the top fundraisers for the Lompoc branch: Chumash Casino with $10,000; Imerys Minerals California Inc. with $4,000; and George C. Karlson Foundation with $5,000.

Over the last eight years, according to YMCA officials, the Lompoc Family YMCA has granted more than $750,000 in scholarships for the Lompoc community. The branch reported that it served more than 5,000 community members in 2016, 45 percent of whom were on financial assistance, and that 444 youth attended child care programs, and $86,451 of financial assistance was granted.

“It is through the generosity of donations that keep our programs Third Grade Learn to Swim, LIVESTRONG and any of the other services we offer running at the Y,” Saucedo said. “These programs help to support our community and make Lompoc a better place for youth and families.”

The Lompoc Family YMCA is still accepting donations for its Annual Campaign fund. Donations can be dropped off or mailed to the Lompoc Family YMCA at 201 W. College Ave., Lompoc CA 93436 or by calling 736-3483.

For more information on the annual campaign or to make an online donation, visit www.ciymca.org/lompoc.

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This report was prepared by Willis Jacobson. He can be reached at wjacobson@leecentralcoastnews.com.