Did you know...?
Interesting facts about the YMCA and YMCA Derbyshire
These were all originally featured in the 'Fact File' of our monthly magazine, Team Brief
YMCA Derbyshire is one of the oldest YMCAs in the world. YMCA Derby was founded in 1847, only three years after George Williams founded the first YMCA in London.
Across England, YMCAs assist 65,000 young people each year with the help of 7,000 paid members of staff and a further 7,000 volunteers.
There are 124 national YMCA movements recognised by the World Alliance of YMCAs, which has its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.
YMCA Derbyshire now employs over 90 paid members of staff, up from 74 three years ago.
Our founder, George Williams, received a knighthood from Queen Victoria on the movement’s 50th anniversary in 1894. He died in 1905 and as laid to rest in the crypt at St Paul’s Cathedral.
Henry Dunant, a founder of the World Alliance of YMCAs, won the first ever Nobel Peace Prize in 1901 for founding the International Committee of the Red Cross and inspiring the Geneva Convention.
A time capsule buried outside the main doors of YMCA Derbyshire’s Campus for Learning and Development will be dug up and opened in 2044 – the YMCA movement’s 200th anniversary – and includes a letter from the present CEO to her successor.
In 1855, just 11 years after the first YMCA was founded, there were already 40 local YMCAs operating outside London – including in Derby.
The YMCA’s famous red triangle emblem – which signifies our vision for holistic development of body, mind and spirit – was first adopted during the First World War when a major focus of the YMCA’s work was to set up huts in warzones to provide food and a place of rest for soldiers.
YMCA England’s Midlands Region consists of 16 member YMCAs from Derby and Nottingham down to Milton Keynes. It is one of nine YMCA regions across England.
Based in the Czech Republic, the European Alliance of YMCAs is an umbrella body of national YMCA movements in Europe. It has approximately 30 members, along with 10 other co-operating movements. The President of its Executive Board is currently Peter Posner, who is also on our own Board of Trustees.
Each year around 500,000 people engage in local YMCA community health programmes around the country.
The Olympic sports Basketball, Netball and Volleyball were all invented by the YMCA.
The YMCA has now been identified as the USA’s most valuable non-profit brand, ahead of the Salvation Army.
When George Williams founded the YMCA in 1844, its stated aim was for “the improving of the spiritual condition of young men engaged in the drapery, embroidery, and other trades.”