ALTON, IL. (KTVI) - The YWCA in Alton is at risk of closure because of funding woes and some are taking their fundraising efforts to the community. The organization has been in Alton since 1918. It recently lost funding from the United Way and is now faced with a potential closure. Executive Director Andrea Lamer says a closure would end all of the exercise, education and life skills classes taught at the building. Thirty jobs are also at risk.
''We lost a significant donor and we are experiencing a 25 percent cut. We are on a $450,000 budget. Right now we are reaching out to our community for about $80,000 of that.' Said Lamer
Margaret Miller is a regular and says going to the YWCA has changed her life. She also thinks the healthy family environment is good for her kids. The close relationships are what make the experience inside of the 95 -year- old building unique.
'It would be such a shame if it won`t stay open. I was devastated not just because they helped my family personally, but there are other children here who need help.' Said Miller
YWCA instructor Caroline Hicks agrees.
'It means a safe environment they can be in it means a family environment they can prosper in without color or creed or anything.' Said Hicks
The organization has until May 7th to raise the money and members are using the web and word of mouth to reach as many people as possible. So far more than $5,000 has been raised. The organization has enough funds to keep the doors open until May 31st.
'It`s like closing a chapter on history and legacy. It would be sad to lose something that has been a rock in the community.' Hicks said