Local YMCA supporting opportunities for involvement by all.
The YMCA of the Foothills has launched an international partnership with the National YMCA movement in Armenia. The focus of the partnership at the outset is to provide technical support and encouragement to the creation of a strategic development plan for Y Armenia’s national movement, which was re-started after the collapse of the Soviet empire in 1991. Tyler Wright, CEO/president of the local Y, recently visited and provided consultation to YMCA leaders in Armenia and envisions a broad involvement in the years to come.
“The local Armenian population is one of the fastest growing groups in the communities we serve locally,” said Wright. “Our desire is to be a diverse and inclusive voice in this community, making life-changing impact, while also bridging any ethnic divides that may still exist. Our hope is to connect our local work with our global friends.”
The existence of the Armenian YMCA movement in Turkey dates back to 1883. Unfortunately, all of these Ys were shut down after the Armenian Genocide of 1915. The return of the Y movement to Armenia in 1991 was the result of a local humanitarian aid organization, initiated in the southwest Lori province, in response to the devastating Armenian earthquake of 1988.
The YMCA of the Foothills is focused on engaging and involving those of Armenian descent locally and the residents of Armenia abroad. During Wright’s recent visit, he met with national YMCA leaders and helped start the process of strategic planning for the movement. As a result of this, the YMCA of the Foothills invested $20,000 through contributions raised locally to help the Armenia Ys achieve their mission of “promoting positive social change through education, advocacy and direct service delivery that develop healthy spirit, mind and body.”
“It is our goal through our partnership with our friends in Armenia to develop programs and activities that will support our families here in our community creating long-lasting relationships and life-impacting experiences,” commented Wright.