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Director's Mission Is Enticing Children to YMCA Programs : * Monrovia: Doug Sink's latest project is a child-care center where children from Monrovia, Arcadia and Duarte will receive after-school supervision. The YMCA now runs two such programs at other sites.

February 12, 1992|KAREN KLEIN | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Doug Sink first joined the YMCA when he was a 6-year-old growing up in North Carolina. Now that he's 37 and executive director of the Santa Anita Family YMCA in Monrovia, he's trying to get boys and girls as enthusiastic about the program as he has been for three decades.

His latest project is a child-care center where, he hopes by next fall, 45 children from Monrovia, Arcadia and Duarte will receive after-school supervision.

"There's such a great need that we don't have enough slots," Sink said. "We'll fill this center up."

The new center, which will be next to the YMCA building on Mountain Avenue, was funded in part by a $160,000 grant from the H. N. and Francis C. Berger Foundation. Construction will begin by May, Sink said. It will include a new playground and programs that take advantage of YMCA facilities. Sink said he hopes to provide some subsidized spots for children whose parents cannot afford child care.

The YMCA now runs two after-school care programs for 65 to 70 children daily. YMCA staff members pick up the children at schools in Monrovia, Arcadia and Duarte and take them to Holly School in Arcadia and Monroe School in Monrovia for arts and crafts, movies, snacks, and help with their homework.

The programs are open from 12:30 to 6 p.m. and cost from $40 to $65 a week, depending on age, number of hours and Y membership. The two existing programs will continue to operate after the new center opens.

YMCA board members are launching a donation campaign to fund day-care scholarships.

Youth programs have a special importance for Sink, whose involvement has been almost continuous since he joined the North Carolina YMCA to take swimming lessons.

From swimming, he graduated to after-school programs and youth basketball. Later, he became camp counselor and youth director.

He's been employed by the YMCA for 13 years and was general director of the Corcoran Family YMCA in Kings County before coming to the Santa Anita Family YMCA in November, 1990.

"I came in with ideas, and people bought into what I was trying to do," Sink said. "The staff, the community and the board members have been very supportive, and the city has played a large role."

When he started at Santa Anita, there were 69 youth memberships, Sink said. Currently, the number stands at 530, with about 150 children receiving scholarships.

Recently, the YMCA opened a youth center/game room in an unused Monrovia park building and raised $265,225 in corporate grants and donations. Much of the money has gone to provide computers, homework assistance programs and values-education classes for former latchkey kids.

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