Sarnia-Lambton YMCA, file photo.

YMCA To Run Petrolia Community Centre

The YMCA is taking over operations of the Oil Heritage District Community Centre in Petrolia.

The contract, approved at Monday’s town council meeting, takes effect on April 2, 2018.

YMCA Southwestern Ontario Interim President and CEO Kathi Lomas McGee says services will include swimming lessons, recreational and youth programs, and fitness classes.

She says current staff at the centre will be given the first chance to apply for jobs.

“We have a job fair that is coming up over the next couple of weeks,” says Lomas McGee. “We’ll be inviting the current employees at the centre to come and meet with us. Once we have our staff teams employed, we’ll start the training and the transition of the programs.”

The YMCA is projecting a 15 per cent growth in membership in 2018, largely due to current members switching from Sarnia to Petrolia.

The organization says it will offer an Assisted Membership program to provide financing to families in need.

The town says with the YMCA operating the centre, it’ll save them about $517,000 in operating costs over five years.