Thursday, November 10, 2005

94th Anniversary of the Young Men’s Christian Association

THE Young Men’s Christian Association of the Philippines was established on November 10, 1911, through the efforts of Justice Frederick C. Fisher and Don Teodoro R. Yangco. It traces its roots to the YMCA that was founded by George Williams in London on June 6, 1844. He established this association in response to the unhealthy social conditions that arose in big cities as a result of the Industrial Revolution (ca. 17501850) to help the rural youth who flocked to the cities in search of work.

Started as an evangelical activity, YMCA is distinguished by its being non-sectarian, non-denominational, and non-racial. It’s openness in accepting all, regardless of race, religion, nationality, and social classes, attracted widespread support. Branches of YMCA sprouted. It was established in America in 1851. In 1866, it adopted YMCA-New York’s aims of improving the spiritual, mental, social and physical condition of young men. Succeeding years saw the broadening of YMCA’s youth programs. Soon, it was not only the needs of the youth but also meeting the needs of the community became a byword in YMCA activities. Character development is an integral part of YMCA programs.

What distinguished YMCA was its focus on group and community activities and its promotion of moral values among the youth. Thus, group activities were promoted and YMCA introduced many new ideas and practices. Foremost of YMCA’s innovative programs was its invention and popularization of basketball and volleyball. It also started the yearly celebration of Father’s Day.

Today, YMCA in the Philippines and in the many lands where its branches exist is in the vanguard of promoting group activities such as recreation, health and literacy, development education, sports and fitness, skills and training in leadership development. They are complemented by YMCA’s thrusts in community development, community organizing, livelihood initiatives, cooperatives, etc. Truly, YMCA is engaged in re-engineering human society, to make it more humane, compassionate, caring.

We congratulate the Officers and Members of Young Men’s Christian Association of the Philippines headed by its President Nemesio G. Co in their celebration of its 94th Anniversary

No comments: