New staff appointments to the communications department

World YMCA is excited to welcome two new staff appointments to the communications department starting 15 March 2019.

Palmer Hestley, Director of Communications

Palmer will be responsible for developing and implementing the communications strategy for the World Alliance of YMCAs while serving as the brand guardian for the organisation. Palmer will also provide support and leadership to communications leads across the YMCA movement and craft the organisation’s message across all platforms and media streams.

Palmer has 15 years’ experience in press, media relations, PR and brand management with the last seven years devoted to YMCA. Palmer was a senior member of an award-winning communications team at YMCA of Greater Houston before relocating to the UK where he supported YMCAs locally and abroad in brand relations and marketing strategy.

Anna Tuson, Communications Consultant

Anna Tuson

Anna is a Communications and Editorial Consultant supporting the World Alliance of YMCAs with media engagement, video and editorial content, internal communications, and social media strategies. She brings more than a decade of experience in press and communications, having worked as a foreign correspondent and for international NGOs and corporations around the world.

Originally from New Zealand but currently based in Geneva, she is fluent in English, German and Turkish.

Please welcome Anna and Palmer to World YMCA family

Meet the staff >>>



New Staff at the World YMCAs

I am pleased to welcome two new staff at the World YMCAs as of 1 February 2019.

DJ Forza as the Director of  Partnerships and Collaboration 

DJ will be responsible for developing a variety of multi-stakeholder communities and platforms to further drive the theme of youth empowerment with governments, academia, civil society, the corporate sector and with subject matter experts from the YMCA movement around key issues such youth employment, climate change, civic engagement and health.   DJ will liaise closely with the YMCA Area Offices and key stakeholders.

Originally from Seattle, DJ has more than 15 years’ experience in developing global strategic partnerships, working both in the private sector and with international humanitarian organizations such as Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance, Geneva Call and Kiva Microfinance.   DJ is a Habitat for Humanity Global Village team leader.

Mykyta Krushelnytski – Administrative Assistant

Mykyta will be giving administrative and logistical support to the World YMCA office.  Mykyta is originally from Ukraine and is fluent in Russian, Ukrainian and English, with knowledge of French and German.  He has an MA in Simultaneous Interpreting and Journalism, as well as an MA in International Finance.   He has experience working in Geneva as an Administration Assistant and has also volunteered at the UN in the Media and Audio Visual Department.

Carlos Madjri Sanvee, Secretary General


Global Summit on Refugees and Migrants

With the number of people on the move now at a record total of more than 68 million – more than half of which are children – the YMCA is stepping up its efforts to help refugees and migrants.

We are pleased to announce our very first Global Summit on Migration and Immigration, which will take place in October 2019. Led by practitioners, the international YMCA family will come together to focus our efforts on more impactful outcomes and stand up for a dedicated humanitarian approach in this critical time.

Displacement, whether it’s induced by conflict, natural hazards or economic factors, impacts on people’s access to basics such as food and healthcare as well as the necessary tools to build futures with dignity: education and livelihoods. Many of the 36 million displaced children are also unaccompanied or separated from their families.

While the YMCA already runs some programmes to help displaced people, we believe we can do more. In fact, we believe that it is our responsibility as our brothers and sisters’ keeper to do all that we can to help these people, who are some of the world’s most vulnerable. This is an essential part of our commitment to supporting young people and their families around the world.

The Global Summit on Migration and Immigration aims to:

– Assess our current contribution to the refugee and migrant crisis
– Create a community to encourage dialogue and learning best practices
– Develop a shared vision and strategic framework for enhanced coordination, communication, advocacy and innovation
– Establish a monitoring system to ensure our programs are effective
– Integrate a Summit into existing YMCA learning platforms on social inclusion through the DIG Innovation Network Event

We are in touch with the UNHCR, the Office of International Migration and other organizations working to empower refugees and migrants to ensure we achieve the most effective outcomes across the board.
Participants should arrive on September 29 and depart on October 5th. Participants will also join the DIG Network of the US YMCA (October 2-4 2019), in Baltimore, US. Further information on registration will be sent out soon.