YMCA Armenia

National Profile

Date of foundation of the YMCA: 1918

Membership Status:  Full member

Full Member of European Alliance of YMCAs since: 1999

Full member of the World Alliance of YMCAs since: 2014

Brief YMCA History

Based on the historical records provided by the Y USA in 2004, Armenians were historically engaged in the first YMCA groups formed in the territory of the Ottoman Empire in 1880s where mainly Armenian and other Christian minorities were involved.

The arrival of YMCA movement to the Republic of Armenia took place in 1992 by the support of Y Care International when humanitarian relief projects were initiated in the south-west of Lori province to support the regions and people affected by the earthquake of 1988. With the further expansion of those projects the need to establish a separate organization emerged and a formal NGO was founded to implement crisis relief programs primarily targeting Armenian refugees escaped from Azerbaijan because of the conflict over Nagorno Karabakh issue meanwhile continuing helping the poor families that had lost their shelters because of the earthquake of 1988.

In 1998 the Armenian YMCA already had operating branches in Yerevan, Gyumri, Vanadzor, Spitak and Vardenis. In 1998 the YMCA Armenia was transformed into Armenian National Union of YMCAs, consisting of the former branches registered as independent local NGOs.

At present YMCA Armenia has 5 member-associations operating in the communities of Gyumri, Vanadzor, Spitak, Vardenis and Paraqar and one YMCA initiative group of Syrian young people with Armenian origin who have moved to Armenia escaping from the war in Syria and implement work with Syrian refugees in Armenia.

Mission Statement

We are a youth-focused community organization promoting positive social change through education, advocacy and direct service delivery that develops a healthy spirit, body and mind.

Main Programmes

YMCA Armenia as the umbrella organization for the YMCA movement is running 3 main programs which contribute to the implementation of the movement strategic development directions:

1)    Ensuring proper and good governing structure and institutional development of YMCA Armenia.

2)    Strengthening the member organizations, expanding movement and its impact.

3)    Support the development of civil society in Armenia

1.  Building Leaders for Armenia project.
Our Goal is to enhance the capacity of the YMCA young people to contribute to the organizational leadership improvement, organizational and program sustainable development both on local and national levels and to be active citizens and to contribute to the civic society development and building a democratic and just society in their community, in the country and globally.

2.  YMCA Support to Syrian refugees.
YMCA Armenia is supporting Syrian refugee families and especially children and youth to lessen the negative effects of the Syrian war, help them get integrated and adapt to the changes of their lives in a new environment, to grow as individuals and as leaders in a safe space and creative atmosphere and be an active part of the Armenian society, meanwhile preserving the own culture and identity.

3.    Global leadership and Youth exchange projects
The goal is to empower YMCA young leaders and enhance their responsible and efficient engagement through
•    providing them with learning and capacity building opportunities; fostering their personal and leadership skills development;
•    raising their YMCA awareness and giving them the sense of being part of the global movement;
•    providing opportunities for intercultural learning and youth-to-youth interaction;
•    enlarging their worldview;
•    service learning opportunities;
•    personal and organizational partnership, networking.

Teamed up with our member local organizations we work with children and youth for building strong kids, strong families and strong communities, while promoting YMCA core values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility.

Our member YMCAs are implementing following programs in the communities they are serving

Civic engagement
•    Trainings on Human Rights, Teamwork & Leadership, Volunteerism, Local Government System, Civil Society Development, etc
•    Youth Education and Active Civic Engagement Initiatives

•    Day Camps
•    Residential Camps
•    Summer Outdoor Camps & Scout Camps
•    Recreational Camps

Youth Development and Youth Clubs
•    TenSing
•    Scouting
•    Volunteer Club
•    Book Club
•    English Club
•    Dance Club
•    Arts & Crafts Club
•    Sports Clubs
•    Puppet theatre & Drama Club

Community Service
•    Non-formal Educational Programs
•    Child Day Care
•    Preschool Education
•    Afterschool Care
•    Summer School
•    Community Development and Youth Mobilization
•    Refugee Integration Programs
•    Peace work
•    International Youth Exchange Programs
•    Service Learning and Volunteering Projects

Address National Office

Koren Papoyan – General Secretary/CEO
Address: 170 Aygestan, 1802, Spitak, Lori marz, Republic of Armenia
Phone: +374 255 24083
e-mail: ymca@ymca.am

On-line presence