NewsPositively Hampton Roads


YMCA worker is the centerpiece of Norfolk community

Posted at 6:27 PM, Aug 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-27 22:08:58-04

NORFOLK, Va. - The kids at the Hunton YMCA are taken care of by some of the kindest, most caring people. One woman in particular is making a huge impact!

Brenda Gibbs has been the CEO at the Hunton YMCA for 15 years. She is fiercely committed to the hundreds of kids who go there, making sure each child enjoys their day.

“Our community is on the news a lot for violence and crime, but we have some great kids. We have honor students, we have kids who have never missed any days from school," stated Gibbs.

Brenda Gibbs

In the summer, Gibbs makes sure everyone gets fed - 300 kids a day come through her lunch line!

“Our kids come here for after school programs, they come here for meals, they come here to have a safe environment to play. We play a vital part in this community, and we take our work seriously."

When asked why she enjoys her job so much, Gibbs didn't skip a beat.

“When you’re working with great kids that’s what you do, and I love them all," Gibbs said joyfully. "The kids appreciate it when I come in, they hug me, they make me feel like I’m needed, like I have worth and value.”

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Gibbs works side by side with YMCA director Paula Jennings, who has nothing but great things to say about her co-worker.

“The old saying, 'The back bone to everything' - she’s out every day. She’s out trying to make a difference, trying to make sure the building stays open,” Jennings explained.

Since Gibbs makes such an wonderful impact on our community's youth, News 3 wanted to honor her with a News 3 People Taking Action award.

Gibbs didn't know what to expect!

“They caught me off guard," said Gibbs. "I really truly wasn’t expecting this. I don’t wanna get emotional.”

And the crowd really went wild when we presented her with a $300 Visa gift card from out community partner, Southern Bank.

She was very thankful for her YMCA kids she looks after and her new award!

Do you know someone who's worthy of a People Taking Action award? Click here to nominate them!