What is the YMCA? The Y is made up of all ages from every walk of life working side by side to strengthen communities. The YMCA’s motto is that they work to insure everyone, regardless of gender, income, faith, sexual orientation, or cultural background, has the opportunity to live life to its fullest. They share the values of caring, honesty, respect, and responsibility. In this paper you will learn a lot about the YMCA’s history, its founder, and some of the activities.
George Williams founded the YMCA in 1844. In 1844 twenty-two-year-old George Williams joined 11 friends to organize the first Young Men’s Association (YMCA), a refuge of Bible study and prayer for young men seeking escape from life on the streets. The Y offered something
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Throughout World War I, the YMCA provided morale and welfare services for the military. By war’s end, the YMCA, through the United War Work Council, had operated 1,500 canteens in the United States and France; set up 4,000 YMCA huts for recreation and religious services; and raised more than $235 million—equal to $4.3 billion today—for relief work. In 1926, YMCAs made a commitment to families when the parent-child program Y-Indian Guides began at the St. Louis YMCA. Started by Harold J. Keltner and Joe Friday, a member of the Ojibway tribe, the program was based on the Native-American family model and sought to foster the companionship of father and son. The program later expanded to include father-daughter (Y-Indian Princess), mother-son, mother-daughter (Y-Indian Maiden) and parent-preschooler components.
Sponsored by the New York State YMCA, the YMCA Youth & Government program began in Albany in 1936. The program encourages high school students to understand the processes of government and to prepare to participate in it. In 1950, YMCA volunteer Joe Sobek invented racquetball in Greenwich, Conn., as an alternative to squash and handball. Like previous YMCA inventors, Sobek was not paid for his invention; he claimed it as a gift to all who play the game today. From 1956 to 1966, the YMCA Building for Brotherhood campaign raised more than $5.5 million to strengthen the