$6.4 million investment from BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Foundation provides new community space
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — On Saturday, Jan. 22, representatives from the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Foundation joined staff from the Northwest Family YMCA, along with Nashville Mayor John Cooper, to celebrate the opening of the BlueCross Healthy Place at the Northwest Family YMCA.
The BlueCross Foundation has invested $6.4 million in the project, including $5.3 million to build out the space and $1,060,000 for a maintenance fund. It is the first BlueCross Healthy Place project in the Nashville area and will be open to all residents, regardless of YMCA membership status.
“When our team visited the YMCA, we saw how well-loved it is, and we realized we could enhance its features and expand access by bringing a BlueCross Healthy Place to the area,” said Chelsea Johnson, director of the BlueCross Foundation. “We’re excited to see the new space being used by local residents of all ages.”
Features in the new space include:
- Accessible play areas for children ages 2-5 and 5-12 with ramp access, ground-level play and a soft rubber safety surface
- Challenge course
- Splash zone
- Basketball/pickleball courts
- Multipurpose field
- Adult fitness equipment
- Walking path
- Shade structures
“This is the most visible health investment in this community in decades,” said YMCA Executive Director Johari Matthews. “Children, teens and seniors will be able to engage in activity at the same time, which is an essential component in breaking a multi-generational cycle of health disparities in the area.”
Mayor Cooper added, “This is the Y that created the YMCA Black Achievers Program. This is the place North Nashville and Bordeaux turned to early in the pandemic for pop-up COVID testing. The Northwest Y is home to a backpack drive, every summer. And this is the Y that the BlueCross Foundation has chosen as a partner for a new space, where everyone will always be welcome. And we need as many spaces like that as possible – in Nashville and across our country.”
To date, the BlueCross Foundation has invested $31.7 million in BlueCross Healthy Place projects across the state.
For more on the BlueCross Healthy Place program, see bluecrosshealthyplaces.com.
BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee is a taxpaying, not-for-profit health plan serving more than 3.4 million members in Tennessee and around the country. The Chattanooga-based company was founded in 1945 and has brought peace of mind to its members and local communities for more than 75 years. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. For more information, visit the company’s news center at bcbstnews.com.
About BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Foundation, Inc.
The BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation organized to promote the philanthropic mission of BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. It has awarded $120 million in grants since 2005. The foundation provides funding for the BlueCross Healthy Place program, which creates active, healthy spaces across Tennessee.