Nicholas P.

Lakewood Family YMCA

Nicholas Packer first came to the Y to recuperate after he tore a tendon in his shoulder. Although he came to the Y to rebuild his strength, he found much more than a gym; he found a home.

“The Y does connection really well. Before I came to the Y, I was in an empty and lonely place," said Nicholas. "It doesn’t matter who we are, we all need love and friends, and this what the Y is all about.”

Due to his shoulder injury, Nicholas couldn’t use many of the machines, so he started walking around the track and around the building. As he walked, he began to socialize and get to know the staff, some of whom are now his closest friends. One staff invited Nicholas to take Journey to a Life of Significance, a small group focused on building community and confidence.

“Journey to a Life of Significance changed my whole life," said Nicholas. "Since coming to the Y I have found a caring community who always cheers me up and strengthens me in my doubts. When I come to the Y after work it feels like coming home.”