Gateway Region YMCA World Service
World Service support is used in countless ways to support youth-led social entrepreneurship, health education and training, climate change action and other civic engagement initiatives that position young people to lead the change in their communities.
Learn More About Our International Partners
The YMCA was established in Ukraine in 1902. After being banned from 1917 to 1991 when Ukraine was part of the Soviet Union, the YMCA was reorganized and restarted in 1993.
There are 25 local YMCAs around the country reaching tens of thousands of youth and young adults each year through programs focused on sports, camping, psychosocial counseling, performing arts, HIV prevention, international exchanges and civic engagement.
Ukrainian YMCAs in Lviv Rivne, Lutsk, Karpaty and Ternopil in the west and Zaporizhzhia and Kharkiv in the east are providing emergency support to the local community and the thousands of internally displaced people arriving from conflict impacted communities. This includes food, shelter, and overall support for youth, families, and the elderly. Learn more about YMCA Ukraine's response.
Established in 1987 and incorporated April 7, 1995, the YMCA Belize has been a local partner in the global, community-led YMCA movement to build healthy families and communities. YMCA Belize serves the children and families of some of Belize City’s lowest socioeconomic communities, who are faced with disproportionate obstacles and challenges.
Belize is a very young and independent country (1981) who is still struggling to meet the needs of its people. The community has needs of education, sports and training which is primarily what the YMCA of Belize provides in its limited capacity and scarce resources.
In 2006, a collaboration of U.S. YMCAs was formed to provide support to the South Africa YCMA to strengthen its leadership, governance, programs, communications and financial sustainability.
Today, the YMCA South Africa serves urban youth through after school programs that focus on improving academic performance. Provides youth with education programs in the arts, economics, entrepreneurship, juvenile justice, science, math and technology. Organizes street soccer programs to provide safe spaces for youth to play away from neighborhood gangs, prostitution and violence.
The YMCAs in Colombia serve the most vulnerable populations reaching over 30,000 people annually. Priority is placed on youth programs that promote peace and solidarity, psychosocial and educational support for victims of violence, poverty reduction and forced displacement.
YMCA Colombia was founded in 1964 in Bogotá with a mission to help children and youth (particularly those who were homeless) who lived in highly vulnerable situations. YMCA Colombia’s focus has been on teaching its children and youth how to be leaders with transferrable skills so that they can help empower future generations.
Today, the YMCA engages young people in underserved communities through service-learning projects and leadership development opportunities.Empowers vulnerable teens and young adults to start their own businesses through financial literacy education and entrepreneurship programs. Provides safe spaces for education, counseling and recreation to children and women who have been sexually exploited.
The main emphasis of the Chilean YMCAs are health and wellness, programs for at-risk youth, international exchanges, child care, resident camps, and community centers serving families in extreme poverty.
The first association in Chile was founded in Valparaíso September 2nd, 1912, motivated by the English and German residents. The movement extended to Santiago in 1920, with Concepción following in 1927. Antofagasta was founded in 1962 and extended to Iquique in 1981. Now the movement has extended to Temuco, located in the south of Chile.
Currently the Chilean movement reaches 12.000 members, with Santiago attending to 30% of Chile’s participants. The principal programs are related to physical education, sports, camps, schools, recreation, and community work.