The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

December 28, 2012

Helms family makes generous gift to YMCA


Friday, December 28, 2012 — Helping others is much more to Carl L. Helms than a seasonal act – it’s a way of life. Helms carries a passion to help all types of people, but his main focus is to make a difference in the lives of the homeless of Stanly County.

Four years ago, with the help of other concerned individuals, Helms put his heart into action and opened the Community Inn in Albemarle.

Since the inception of this idea, he has worked tirelessly to make a difference in the lives of the homeless population in our county.

“I am a great believer in helping people,” said Helms. Upon the death of his mother, Mabel Helms Burton in 2001, Helms organized a trust with his mother’s estate and named the Stanly County Family YMCA as a benefactor.

“I chose the Y as a recipient of this trust because I knew the Y was actively involved in doing things for all types of people.”

A week prior to Thanksgiving Helms brought his gift to the Y and presented it to retiring Executive Director John Lowder.

“A portion of the Helms family gift will have an immediate impact on the Y and our ability to serve the community especially families, seniors and those coming through our medical fitness programs,” said George Crooker, CEO of Stanly County Family YMCA.

“The Family Fitness Center on the third floor of the Y will receive all new Cybex strength training equipment as well as several new pieces of cardiovascular equipment.”

The Family Fitness Center is dedicated to serving families, seniors and the medical fitness program participants at the Y.

These medical fitness programs include Cardiac and Pulmonary Rehab and LIVESTRONG at the YMCA.

“Helms lost a daughter to cancer and is, himself, a cancer survivor,” said Crooker. “His gift will benefit all cancer survivors who come through our LIVESTRONG at the YMCA program and many more.”

Helms, a strong Christian, believes God had a plan years ago for the money he put aside for the Y to serve all people through its mission “To put Christian principles into practice through programs that build a healthy spirit, mind, and body for all.”

The majority of the Helms Family Gift was donated to the Stanly County Family YMCA Foundation where it will continue to help the Y serve all types of people through its mission for generations to come.

“I want to encourage others in our community to give estate gifts to organizations making a difference in our community,” said Helms. “I believe the Y and the churches do most of the work in the community and I wanted to secure that with a gift that will continue into the future.”

A ribbon cutting ceremony will take place in early January for the new and improved Helms Family Center at the Y.