History of the YMCA

What do basketball, Father’s Day and Jazzercise have in common? They were all started at a YMCA. The Young Men’s Christian Association was founded in London, England, on June 6, 1844, in response to unhealthy social conditions arising in the big cities at the end of the Industrial Revolution. Learn more about the History of the Y Movement.

CORE VALUES OF THE YMCA

All YMCA programs have a strong emphasis on the values of caring, honesty, respect, responsibility and faith. Adopted formally by the YMCA of the USA in the early 1990s, the core YMCA values were developed to help teach kids right from wrong.

CARING: To love others, to be sensitive to the well-being of others, to help others.

“Where there is love, there is life.” Gandhi

HONESTY: To tell the truth, to act in such a way that you are worthy of trust, to have integrity; making sure your choices match your values.

“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.” Thomas Jefferson

 RESPECT: To treat others as you would have them treat you; to value the worth of every person, including yourself.

“You don’t have to be handicapped to be different. Everyone’s different.” Kim Peek

 RESPONSIBILITY: To do what is right, what you ought to do; to be accountable for your behavior and obligations. 

“The time is always right to do what is right.” Martin Luther King, Jr.

FAITH: To encourage people to develop their faith and to be a place where people of many different religions can come together. 

“Without faith a man can do nothing; with it all things are possible.” Sir William Osler