Resilient YMCA – Welcome to a new regular newsletter, showcasing how resilient ymca from around the world strive to inform, inspire and connect 

Date: 31 March 2020

Coronavirus is impacting the whole world. YMCA staff and programmes have been deeply affected: offices and hostels closed, events and camps cancelled, school and sport activities shut down. The health, economic and social consequences of a prolonged crisis appear frightening.


In a time of such anxiety and instability, we’re getting a real-time lesson in the value of our global YMCA family. As we strive to keep essential programmes open, working for the most part in isolation, instead of a sense of separation it is abundantly clear that we are all in this together. National, regional and local offices responded massively to World YMCA’s call to share information on how they are adapting to survive. The newly launched COVID-19 YMCA Response Hub has a wealth of resources around operational planning, member communications, online learning, finance and insurance, and more. Our Global YMCA Response and Impact database contains case studies on how YMCAs are continuing to achieve impact. I urge you to make the most of these resources, and to contribute to them.

Last year, long before any of us had heard of coronavirus, World YMCA chose ‘resilience’ as its guiding theme. It’s difficult to grasp the value of resilience until you need it; it’s clear that we need it now. By helping each other to build resilience, by sharing what works (and what doesn’t) in adapting to this global crisis, we can ensure that every YMCA can continue to fulfil its mission, this year and beyond.

Carlos Madjri Sanvee
Secretary General | World YMCA

COVID-19 Awareness

The Philippines YMCA has launched an online information drive to inform members and youth on COVID-19. Lebanon has started an online awareness program on COVID 19 prevention, funded by the World Health Organization and conducted over WhatsApp. Ghana YMCA is doing online education through its social media platforms and distributing advocacy materials to all its centers. Senegal YMCA volunteers are distributing hydro-alcoholic gel, soap and bleach bottles.



Social Mobilisation
German YMCA has initiated a local alliance of YMCA, Scouts, church parishes and a local NGO to protect the sick and elderly by taking care of their shopping, while Yokohama has launched a phone service to help families in crisis get food and supplies. Sierra Leone YMCA has set up local health groups to check on community members. Colombia YMCA staff are distributing food to vulnerable communities, while Munich is offering space in its YMCA building to medical staff of three nearby hospitals.In the United States, YMCAs are providing emergency childcare for health workers and first responders at 559 sites nationally and distributing food to the community in 384 sites.

Digital Connection
Siderno (Italy) YMCA is using Google’s digital platform for non-profits to support primary and secondary school students, while Houston (USA) is using ZOOM for educational class offerings and staff support. The YMCA Europe‘s “YMCA Connects” campaign allows members to share experiences and materials, while in New Zealand, a YMCA Family Facebook group is helping people stay active and engagn their mental health and providing aid to reduce anxiety and fear that can lead to depression. Brazil YMCA has launched an online channel to promote physical activity at home, while many US YMCAs are sharing online\on-demand fitness videos.


Advocacy The Africa Alliance of YMCAs is supporting and coordinating advocacy campaigns between its National Movements, while the Korean YMCA is leading a civil society coalition advocating for coordinated, global efforts around education and service delivery to the most u

Many YMCAs, including in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Kosovo, are forming coalitions to ask governments to support the non-profit sector. The UK YMCA is also applying pressure on insurance companies to pay out on their liabilities.nderprivileged.

Mental and Physical Wellbeing
Yokohama YMCA is providing on-line wellness exercises as well as assisting individuals and families by phone, checking o

Access to Funding
YMCA Europe is designing an online webinar on how to write applications for European Union funding.