YMCAs in the United States History

With a presence across 10,000 neighborhoods, YMCA in the United States is a leading non-profit organization. YMCA was founded in 1844 to help young men who migrated to the city of London from rural areas to find a job. While there were many men's associations, YMCA brought young men together to meet social needs of the community. The United States YMCA was formed by Boston sea captain Thomas Valentine Sullivan who saw a need to create a 'home away from home' for sailors and merchants. This was done on December 1851 at the Old South Church in Boston.

The first YMCA for the black people was founded in 1853 by Anthony Bowen. Since then the US YMCA has always ensured that immigrants were welcomed in the country and helped them in adapting to the place. In 1856, an English second language class started to be held for German immigrants at Cincinnati. Chicago's Farwell Hall was the first YMCA dormitory that was created in 1867. Such accommodations grew from 55,000 in 1922 to 100,000 in 1940. Some of the most well-known people have been known to stay here in their early days in U.S.

In 1875 the first YMCA to help the large Chinese population was created and in 1971, a Japanese YMCA was built in the country. In 1885, camping was introduced to YMCA, something that has become a key part of the organization in the area of youth development. There were also a large number of programs that were created to provide youth with vocational training. Evening classes were started at Boston in 1893. And by 1950 YMCA was operating in about 20 colleges.

Ever since there have been various campaigns that YMCA has taken up depending on the need of the period and the community. There was a campaign to teach every man and boy in America to swim. YMCA also played a critical role in World War I and II.


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