The YMCA operates for the good of people and communities rather than for a profit. A key focus of our charitable mission is providing vital services that positively impact some of Canada’s most pressing health and social issues.
The YMCA is for everyone. That’s why you’ll find us taking extra steps to provide financial assistance to make Y programs affordable for everyone, ensure accessibility for children of all abilities, and delivering programs targeting specific groups or neighbourhoods without cost to participants.
Funding for YMCAs in Canada comes from a variety of sources and may include:
Your membership or program fees pay for the operating costs associated with your YMCA program. As such, you help to cover operating costs in buildings that are also home to charitable initiatives.
The YMCA also relies on generous supporters who provide donations to ensure we can open our doors to everyone in the community, regardless of their circumstances. So by choosing to be a Y member, you are part of something larger. However, there is a more impactful role you can play in supporting your community by choosing to become a Y donor. Visit our Donate page to learn more.
When first established, Y.M.C.A. was an acronym for Young Men’s Christian Association. While you will still find that some YMCAs around the world still use this full name, many, including all YMCAs in Canada, are known simply as the YMCA. This reflects our commitment to serving people of all ages, genders, backgrounds and abilities through all stages of life.
Most YMCAs in Canada recognize and honour memberships from other YMCAs, so you can stay active when you’re away from home. Similarly, Canadian YMCA memberships are generally recognized and accepted by international associations. There are some exceptions, so be sure to check with the YMCA you want to visit to confirm their policy prior to visiting. The YMCA of Eastern Ontario recognizes memberships from other YMCA associations.