In the month since The Republican Journal ran a story (April 8) about Waldo County YMCA's Y-Strong Bridge Campaign, the Y has received more than $100,000 in additional donations, exceeding its $300,000 goal.

With almost $325,000 in gifts to date, Executive Director Russell Werkman said the organization has raised its capital campaign target to $350,000.

In an email to The Journal, Werkman called the community response "pretty incredible."

"Starting with the strength of our board, who was 100% behind the campaign and committed the first $50,000, and our major donors, Viking Lumber, Robbins Lumber and the Robbins Family, and Tom and Sally Savage, who laid the foundation for this campaign’s success, the campaign took off," Werkman wrote.

"I am thrilled that the community has been so supportive and over the next month, my goal will be to bring in as many gifts at any level — 100, 50, 20, anything — so that when all the people who contributed are recognized, that plaque (or, possibly, sculpture) will give people a chance to revel in being part of something bigger than themselves," he wrote.

"While I know the last chapter of COVID has not been written, I am equally sure that the way Waldo County has banded together to get through it is something to memorialize. I am hoping we can find a good way to do that.

"If this campaign has taught me one thing, it is how big the impact of this Y has been and (okay, two things) how deep the support in the community is. I am so proud to be part of it and excited to ensure and extend that impact."