The YMCA is a charity that provides health, education and social services. It contributes to the mix of public, private, and charitable programs and facilities available to Canadians. As well, the YMCA has always been there to catch people who "fall between the cracks" of public systems and the marketplace.
YMCA programs are responses to community needs. That is why a YMCA can look very different from community to community, country to country, and generation to generation. As needs change, so does the YMCA's program offerings.
Few people can cite all the things the YMCA does or has done. What they have come to know is that:
the YMCA is there for everyone through every stage of life and its ups and downs.
YMCA programs get results.
any program created or adapted by the YMCA carries its charitable purpose and values.
a board of community-minded citizens oversees how the YMCA's assets are used to advance its mission.
A YMCA and its programs promote:
- a global perspective – awareness of our interdependence and a desire to work for justice and peace
- holistic health – understanding that health is more than the absence of illness, that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure
- philanthropy and volunteerism – ways to serve oneself and others, to participate in building a better community for everyone
- values – caring, honest, respectful, and responsible behaviour
“There is no doubt that a small group of people can change the world. In fact, it is the only thing that ever has.” Margaret Mead