"THAT THEY ALL MAY BE ONE"
The Kingston YMCA
The Kingston YMCA is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation that was founded
in June 1920. It is a family oriented organisation which seeks to promote the
welfare of young people through spiritual, social, intellectual, and physical
activities, geared to the development of spirit, mind and body.
Its years of involvement in community service to the youth in the urban &
sub-urban part of the country saw the establishment of :-
- Boys Town in 1940,
- The Youth Development Programme (formerly 'Street corner Boys Programme)
- The YMCA/Amy Bailey training centre being re-established in 1990, and the
implementation of other wide range programmes designed to attract and
benefit all age groups of our society .
The objective of these programmes is to develop the urban and sub-urban community
through a process of empowerment with the provision of Skills Training, Academic,
Personal and Family Development, Reproductive Health, Instilling Christian Principles
and Social Development Activities.
These programmes are offered to the need of inner city youth obtaining a holistic
education due to violence, poverty and behavioral problems exhibited; Overcrowding
in some of the existing schools which have led to an alarming number of adolescents
dropping out of the formal schools, as they are not able to read at their Grade
levels and/or their attitude which has caused them to be expelled. In addition,
there are those who have never been registered in a formal school (including
street children) or those who have been diagnosed with a learning disability.
The project caters to adolescents male and female in education, prevocational
skills with the aim of re-integration in the formal school system/pre-vocational/vocational
Large-scale Community-Outreach Programs offered by the Kingston Y.M.C.A.
have included the establishment of Boys Town for the vocational training
and spiritual upliftment of depressed youths in the inner city of
Western Kingston. The "Y" has a wide range of programs designed to
attract and benefit Jamaica's youth. These include:
Youth Development Program (YDP)
Formerly named the 'Street Corner Boys' Program in 1974, which assisted
young boys who wiped windscreens of passing motorists for a fee, and spent
their day and nights on the streets has now evolved into the Uplifting
Adolescents Program. For over twenty years, this program annually helps
more than 180 boys. The project offers remedial education (English, Reading
and Math), classes in Social Science, Family Life Education, and skills
covering Welding, Horticulture, Basic Building Construction and Pool
Maintenance. Achievementsunder the UAP include:
- 644 at-risk children reached with UAP services.
- Staff trained to providing the necessary tools to service
- Additional staff capable of coping with high demand.
- Continued upgrading of staff through the UAP workshops.
- Progress in recruitment and retention of street children.
Summer Camp is the 'Hub of the 'Y". It encompasses aspects of the 'Y's
activities including its day programs for children and adults. It now
caters for over 20,000 children annually, between the ages of 3-15
years of age.
Leadership Development Training
The YMCA offers an intensive leadership training program for youth
of 14-25 years, embracing students of both secondary and tertiary
institutions. Currently, 250 persons benefit from the 'Y's Program
each year. Participants are prepared to become leaders and peer
counselors and some graduates of the program often become advisors
at the Y's Summer Camp.
Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme
This is another of the Y's Leadership programs. Aspects of the
program include: recreation, service and skills training. Some
40-50 persons who participate each period must work towards a Gold,
Silver or Bronze Award, as part of an international program. In 1994,
YMCA Kingston, participants of the Duke of Edinburgh Scheme, received
27 gold awards!
The 'HI-Y' Club
Another of the YMCA's leadership programs attracts high school
students who are happy for the opportunity not only to interact
with each other but also to be involved in community outreach
Participants plan excursions, attend seminars and elect to adopt
a 'Home' to which they give their time and special attention.
This program caters to children from 3-14 years old on weekdays
from 12 noon to 5:30 p.m. there is a supervisor who monitors homework,
educational games and rest periods.
The Y is perhaps most well known because of its swimming programs.
The 'Y's "Learn to Swim" programs is thought to be responsible for
teaching 75% of those Jamaicans who can now swim.
The 'Y' offers personal assistance to able and disabled persons
on a needs basis.
This program has been received very well by the students and showing
progress with the help of HEART / National Training Agency (NTA), UAP,
and Mr. Michael Brown. The boys have been working on coffee tables,
goal posts and basket rims as their project. There is great interest
in the area, so much so that boys are able to work on projects,with
little or no assistance from the instructor.
Physical education done by students, games such as football,
cricket, track and they still enjoy the facilities of the pool. Once
per week the boys are instructed in swimming. The students were
involved in competitive sports. They play friendly football matches
with students of the HEART / NTA's Learning for Earning Activity Program
The Kingston Y.M.C.A.
21 Hope Road, Kingston 10, Jamaica, W.I.
Telephone: Gen. Secretary: (876) 926-0801
Office: (876) 926-8081 Fax: (876) 929-9387
The Y.M.C.A. / Amy Bailey Training Centre
4 Rosedale Avenue, Kingston
Tel: (876) 967-3345, Fax: (876) 967-3345