Support and solidarity for YMCA Ukraine

Date: 22 February 2024

It was a moving and inspiring virtual session on Thursday, 22 February 2024. Young leaders from YMCA Ukraine shared their experiences, and leaders from across the Movement shared their support and solidarity with Ukraine, which on 24 February 2024 marks two years since Russia’s invasion.

It was a time for the Movement to come together and hear from leaders representing the 21 local YMCAs still operating in Ukraine.

One young leader said that while he was initially skeptical of the YMCA, it forever changed his life.

“In the darkest times of my life, the YMCA saved me and brought back happiness and hope”, he said.

They explained how they no longer take days off but instead make trench candles, which defenders can use to stay warm and cook meals. And they shared the toll the war takes on young people.

“Instead of spending their youth exploring the beauty of this world”, they have to spend it trying to save this world”, said one leader.

Viktor Serbulov, National General Secretary of YMCA Ukraine, shared how Unlocking Communities and YMCAs have reached over 250,000 people in all regions of Ukraine.

“The end is not yet seen”, he said, “and millions of people are suffering. Please be with us and support us, and together we will overcome”.

World YMCA Secretary General Carlos Sanvee said, “This is a heavy toll for our Ukrainian brothers and sisters. Families have been destroyed, landscapes destroyed. We cannot comprehend everything you are going through, but we feel your pain. We hear you”.

He thanked YMCA Ukraine, YMCA Europe and YMCAs worldwide for continuing to support young people and communities impacted by the war.

“For those in difficult moments, you are not alone”, he said. “We are a global family; let’s continue the unity of our Movement”. 

Visit the YMCA Europe website to learn more about support for Ukraine

Prayer meeting
Scan the QR code to join a prayer meeting on Saturday, 24 February 2024.