Aug 31, 2023
The Cigna Group Foundation and Gateway Region YMCA Partner to Improve Vitality, Reduce Isolation Among Seniors
$150,000 over three years will support programming designed to build confidence, enhance social connections, and inspire community engagement

Bloomfield, Conn., and St. Louis, Mo., August 31, 2023 –The Cigna Group Foundation announced the kickoff of programming funded as part of a multi-year $150,000 partnership with the Gateway Region YMCA to help local seniors improve their health and well-being, which according to research, underpin vitality. The Y hosted a seniors health fair, along with a check presentation ceremony Wednesday, August 30 at the Carondelet Park Y.  The event included a variety of vendors and resource tables, presentations from professionals on mental health and healthy eating - including a cooking demonstration - lunch, and an active older adult fitness class.

The Y will utilize the funding from The Cigna Group Foundation for a dedicated staff person focused on improving social connectedness, decreasing isolation and identifying opportunities for seniors to be well emotionally, mindfully and physically.  This will include wrap-around support through programming such as fitness classes, health resources, social activities, pickleball, nutrition education and community gardens.

“Social connections are essential for physical and mental health at all ages, and the Y has long been a place for seniors to connect with others,” said Brent Hunter, Mid-America market growth leader, Cigna Healthcare. “Our partnership with the Gateway Region YMCA aims to reach seniors and empower them to strengthen their health and vitality. We are excited to partner with the Y to reach more people at pivotal stages of their lives with programming to support their health, well-being and more vital communities.” 

The Cigna Group's proprietary research of 10,000 U.S. adults indicates that less than one in five U.S. adults experience high vitality - defined as the capacity to pursue life’s joys with health, strength and energy.

“The Gateway Region YMCA is grateful to the generous funding from The Cigna Group Foundation to help us provide essential support services to seniors in our region,” stated Tim Helm, President and CEO of the Gateway Region YMCA. “Healthy Living is core to the Y’s mission and this tremendous partnership will allow us to improve our reach to seniors in many ways. We look forward to providing seniors with more supportive environments, enhancing social connections, improving health and simply creating fun opportunities.”

This partnership is part of a $1 million grant by The Cigna Group Foundation to the YMCA of the USA to help improve the vitality of local communities. The grant will also support programming in Memphis, Houston, Phoenix, and Nashville.

About The Cigna Group Foundation

The Cigna Group Foundation, established in 1962, is a private foundation funded by contributions from Cigna Corporation (NYSE:CI) and its subsidiaries. Cigna Foundation supports organizations sharing its commitment to enhancing the health of individuals and families, and the well-being of their communities, with a special focus on those communities where Cigna employees live and work.

About the Gateway Region YMCA:

The Gateway Region Y is a nonprofit organization dedicated to youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, featuring 24 traditional Y branches in Missouri and Illinois, along with the Campus Y student leadership facility at Washington University. The Y also includes YMCA Camp Lakewood and Trout Lodge in Potosi, Missouri. The Carondelet Park Rec Complex and O’Fallon Park Rec Complex are owned by the City of St. Louis and operated by the Y. Additionally, the RiverChase YMCA is owned by the City of Fenton and operated by the Y. The Y is committed to serving people of all abilities. For those who qualify, the Y offers financial assistance so everyone has the opportunity to participate in its programs, regardless of ability to pay. The Y is a proud member of the United Way of Greater St. Louis. For more information, please visit or call 314-436-1177.


Media Contact

Megan Touchette
1 (314) 436-1177

Karla Cutting
1 (312) 218-7061