Dennis Watson Spirit of TEAM Grant

The Dennis Watson Spirit of TEAM Memorial Fund was developed to honor the legacy of long time board member Dennis Watson, a whole-hearted believer in the power of team building.

Dennis was deeply committed to the success of young people in our community and as such he devoted nearly 18 years to the YMCA as a board member, volunteer, and financial supporter. 

During his time with the Y, Dennis lead the charge for the YMCA Middle School Program TEAM devoted to encouraging 8th graders to improve their communication and teambuilding skills, increase their leadership, and to grow as more compassionate individuals.

Dennis encouraged young people to consider how the tone and intention of their communication impacted their ability to build a happy, healthy and vibrant community. He believed that young people, if given the opportunity, could play a vital role in making our communities kinder and more inclusive.


In Dennis’s honor, fund contributions will be used to offer The Spirit of Team Grant to local youth group leaders, teachers and those who are developing programs or projects for middle school students.

Individuals or groups with a program or project idea for middle school students that upholds the ideals of the Y and promotes teambuilding, encourages inclusion, or fosters good communication are encouraged to apply.
Donate to the Fund by naming your donation in honor of Dennis Watson on the Watson Memorial Fund.

How to Apply: Applications will be available for download in September each year and grants will be awarded by the end of October.


With your support we were able to award $3,500 in grants this fall to help fund three projects in 2017. 

Two new projects will begin at Stevens Middle School in Port Angeles, WA. This winter 8th graders will have the opportunity to participate in a day of teambuilding initiatives to enhance their communication and collaboration skills and teachers are working to adapt the YMCA TEAM program lesson plans into bite sized chunks that can be implemented as teambuilding curriculum during their daily study skills period. This curriculum will be introduced into the classroom next spring.

The Jefferson County YMCA, in Port Townsend, WA was additionally awarded to support the start up of the “Builders Club” a new afterschool service learning and teambuilding program for middle school students.

We look forward to sharing the positive outcomes of these projects in 2018.