In the 1990s, the World Alliance of YMCAs united a confederation of over 12,000 local YMCA associations from 130 countries. While each YMCA is independent and reflects its own unique social, political, economic and cultural situation, we share a commitment to health, community service, social change, human development and youth leadership.
Through co-operative and collaborative work here at home, with our partner associations and in other countries, we help promote peace, equality, respect, self-sufficiency and sustainability throughout the world.
The YMCA of Northern BC encourages awareness of international issues on many program levels, including:
Although 2013 marks the end of our formal partnership with CIDA (Canadian International Development Agency,) the five BC YM/YWCA’s are pleased to announce that they will continue their financial support of Ethiopian programs in 2014. The five BC Y’s representing Prince George, Kamloops, Kelowna, Vancouver and Victoria, will fund health programs
and work closely with our German and American Y partners as well as the African Alliance of YMCA’s.
HIV/AIDS is at epidemic proportions in Ethiopia. Over the last seven years, the YMCA has provided training to over 4,000 teenagers in HIV/AIDs education and creating awareness of safe sexual practices in a Peer to Peer Program. This program shared knowledge and information with over
40,000 children in the nine branches of the Ethiopian YMCA.
We estimate that an additional 1,500 families have been supported in dealing with a child living with HIV/AIDS using this YMCA program format. On one of the YMCA’s monitoring visits, Kelowna and Kamloops CEO’s Sharon Petersen and Colin Reid, visited the YMCA in Woilta (located in southern Ethiopia) and were greeted by a hundred children celebrating the Canadian YMCA giving them the Gift of Life which is a reflection of how the Ethiopian YMCA feels about our partnership with them.
Over the years, BC has hosted Y Ethiopia staff as part of the exchange of ideas and confirmation of mission. The BC YM/YWCA’s work closely with the Ethiopians to identify and meet goals such as critical program delivery, infrastructure needs and staff professional development.
Thank you for your support it does make a difference.